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Author Guidelines

You can dowload the Author Guidelines.

Manuscript categories

Forest systems is a quarterly journal that accepts the following manuscript categories:

Research articles make an original and significant contribution to the field of study within the scope of the journal. These will be of interest to a broad audience, scientifically sound, well written and concise.

Short communications must report completed work, not preliminary findings. Articles with local-regional interest may only be accepted here or in the Resources Communications section.

Resource communications include all types of papers dealing with resources or tools of interest for the study and management of forest systems (e.g. methodologies, software, primer notes, growth models, etc.). They must report completed work, not preliminary findings. Papers reporting sequence data: Manuscripts containing primary nucleotide sequence data must be accompanied by (an) accession number(s) from a public nucleotide database (e.g. GenBank, EMBL). Papers reporting software: software should be available in a public website at least for a period of two years after publication of the manuscript.

Reviews aim to give an overall view of an issue of great interest or topicality. They will be invited by the Editorial Board. A potential author could suggest a topic to the Editor-in-chief.

Peer review

Forest System is a peer review journal. Manuscripts are typically reviewed by two referees, from the International Scientific Committee or by external reviewers.

Authors may nominate a list of four potential expert reviewers in their accompanying letter (see below). These reviewers must not have a conflict of interest with the authors or paper, and the Editorial board may not contact any of the reviewers suggested by the authors.

Open access

Forest Systems is an Open Access Journal, and all the articles can be directly downloaded from the web page of the journal free of charge.

Submission and handling of manuscript

Original Manuscripts

Manuscripts are handled either by the Editor-in-Chief or one of the Associate Editors.

Manuscripts will be cursory inspected by the editorial office. Those not achieving requisites for publication (please refer to these guidelines) will be immediately rejected. The rest will be assigned to the corresponding Associate Editor.

Authors must submit manuscripts via an Online Submission and Peer Review system ( Authors may register at any time on the site, but should register only once. During registration, authors choose a username/password. The security of manuscripts is protected by the username/password system. Manuscripts are to be directly submitted electronically in PDF format. Please upload the entire manuscript, with Tables, Figures, and Supporting Information, as one file. Separate figure files may be required once the manuscript is accepted. A completed manuscript submission will be confirmed by e-mail. All email correspondence will be made through the Editorial Manager system ( 

Submission of a manuscript implies:

  • that the work described has not been published previously in any language (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a thesis);
  • that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere;
  • that its publication has been approved by all co-authors, if any, as well as by the responsible authorities at the institution where the work has been carried out;
  • that the authors agree to the automatic transfer of the copyright to the publisher if and when the manuscript is accepted for publication;
  • that the manuscript will not be published elsewhere in any language without the consent of the copyright holders; and
  • that written permission of the copyright holder had been obtained by the authors for the materials used from other copyrighted sources.

When submitting a paper, we recommend uploading an accompanying letter in which the authors can nominate an Associate editor for handling, and a list of four potential expert reviewers, providing full contact address and e-mail details.

Revised manuscripts

In order to expedite production, authors are required to submit their revised manuscripts online, with an accompanying letter with a detailed (point by point) reply to the reviewers and editor comments.  A revised manuscript will retain its original date of receipt only if it is received within four weeks of the date of return to the author. Revised papers returned after this interval will be treated as new submissions. A paper will not be accepted until all the minor changes required have been incorporated into the document. The revised manuscripts will be uploaded in the Editorial Manager system ( of the journal.

There is no handling or page charges.

Manuscript preparation

Manuscript format

Research articles should not be longer than 7000 words, including tables and figures. They will present a Front page, an Abstract in English and in Spanish and up to seven keywords. The main text should have the following sections: (1) Introduction; (2) Material and methods; (3) Results; (4) Discussion; (5) Acknowledgments; (6) References; (7) Tables and figures (see suggested layout below).

Short communications and Resource communications should be no longer than 2000 words, including tables/figures. They will have an Abstract (English and Spanish), main text (divided into sections that could vary depending on the aim of the paper), References, and a maximum of three Tables/figures. Results and discussion may be combined, allowing a greater flexibility in the format.

Review articles (typically invited by the Editor) will follow the same instructions applicable to regular length articles.  

Manuscripts should be written in Times New Roman size 12, with 1.5 spacing, 25 mm margins on each side. All pages should be numbered consecutively, and line numbers should be printed on each page to facilitate ease of reference for the reviewers. Tables and figures should be included on separate sheets, one per page, following the References section. Supporting information (to be published only in the electronic version) can be included after figures and tables.

Language: Manuscripts should be written in concise, legible English or Spanish, which must be careful reviewed by the authors to eliminate all possible mistakes in content and/or in grammar. Those whose first language is not English are strongly advised to have their manuscripts checked by a proficient third party before submission


The following layout is strongly recommended:

1. Front page.

The first page must include:

  • - Title of the work. This must be clear, short and concise. Avoid terms such as «Studies about...», «Observations...», «Contribution to...» The title should preferably not exceed 20 words.
  • - Name(s) of author(s), being the corresponding author marked with an asterisk (*). When authors belong to different centres, each author will carry a superscript number indicating the corresponding author's mailing address. Names may include a first name, initials of second name, and surnames united by a hyphen/-s, which facilitates database searching. We advise spelling authors' names in English-alphabet and without accents.
  • - Name and full postal address of the institution(s), preferably in its native language.
  • - E-mail address and telephone number of the corresponding author.
  • - Number of tables and figures.
  • - A running title of the work, used in the heading of the pages of the printed article, should not exceed 90 characters (including spaces).

2. Abstract, keywords, abbreviations.

Length is 250 words maximum.

Style must be concise and must not contain references.

Structure has to include the following parts:

  • 1) Aim of study. Set the goal or directly the specific objectives and, describe the relevance of the study.
  • 2) Area of study. Specify the geographic area in which the study has been made.
  • 3) Material and Methods. Describe briefly materials and methods; crops or organisms involved must be identified, as well as soil type, chemicals, or other details which can be important for the interpretation of the results.
  • 4) Main results. List and discuss relevant results [numeric values of experimental results should be involved in abstract section].
  • 5) Research highlights: One or two closing sentences with most relevant findings and implications.

Keywords. A maximum of seven keywords should be included. They should not repeat words appearing in the title.

Abstract in Spanish. This will include a translation of the title and of the keywords. For non-native Spanish speakers, this section will be provided by the editorial office after acceptance of the paper in its English version.

Abbreviations used. Include a list of all non-standard abbreviations used in the paper and their meaning.

We strongly recommend that special attention is to be paid to the title and abstract as they may or may not lead readers to go further with the text. The Editorial board may suggest changes to make them more informative and attractive.


3. Text of the article.

Checklist for structure:

We strongly recommend that it should contain the following sections:

  • 1) Introduction. It should contain sufficient information about the background to the work so that this can be placed in context with other research, for the reader to understand the objectives proposed and evaluation of the results and conclude with one or two sentences that define the objectives and the essence of the article.
  • 2) Material and methods. Sufficient information should be provided to enable the experiments to be repeated. For routine methods, a brief description and literature reference will be enough. New methods must be described in detail and, in the case of little used chemical products or equipment, the manufacturer's name and address should be given.
  • 3) Results should include only the results of the experiments. Interpretations of the experimental data should be reserved for the Discussion section. The explanations given in the figure and table captions should not be repeated in the text. Avoid joining Results and Discussion in a single section (except in Short and Resource Communications).
  • 4) Discussion. This should not be limited to describing the experimental results and to drawing conclusions. It should also be analytical, interpretative, and establish an association between the results obtained and other published works. It can describe conflicting opinions and results of other authors and indicate the value of these results for future works.
  • 5) Conclusions summarize the most relevant conclusions and implications. Concluding paragraphs usually do not contain references but are a general, short restating of the main experimental results and their importance to the reader or subject being discussed. Do not write conclusions in enumerated paragraphs. Conclusions may also be contained at the end of the Discussion section.
  • 6) Acknowledgements. Acknowledgements should be made to individuals or institutions that have provided technical support for the work and the sources of funding should also be mentioned.
  • 7) References.

Literature references will be cited in alphabetic order of authors. When several authors are cited, order them from oldest to most recent. If they are of the same year, sort them alphabetically. Articles by the same author should be given in chronological order, and if more than one of the articles has been published in the same year, a letter will be added after the year  by which the reference can be identified (for example, 1985a, b). (you can downloada an Endnote file)

When references are cited in the text, the authors surname will be given in parentheses followed by a comma and the year of publication, for example: «... (Westfall, 1992)...». If there are two authors, the surnames will be followed by «and», for example "...(Lynch and Walsh, 1997)...". If there are more than three authors, include the surname of the first author followed by et al. and a comma, for example «...(Keller et al., 2009)...». If in the text reference is made to the author of the cited work, his/her surname will be given, followed only by the year the work was published. For example: "According to the works of Westfall (1992), Keller et al. (1999a,b)...".

Multi-authored works should list the first six authors followed by et al.  References to a paper 'in press' are permissible provided that it has been accepted for publication (documentary evidence of acceptance must be available on request). A reference to 'unpublished work' is only permissible if it concerns essential information; it should be available from the cited authors on request, and the names of all persons involved should be cited (forename initial(s) followed by surname) in parentheses as 'unpublished data'; any person cited as the source of a 'personal communication' must have approved the reference; both of these types of citation are permitted in the text only, not in the list of references. The use of 'in preparation' or 'submitted for publication' is not permitted.

Examples are given below of literature references.

Journal Article

Coca M, Pausas JG. 2009. Regeneration traits are structuring phylogenetic diversity in cork oak (Quercus suber) woodlands. J Veg Sci 20, 1009-1015.

Anonymous. 2009. European foresters aware of climate change. Scand J Forest Res 24, 191-191.

Keller G, Marchal T, SanClemente H, Navarro M, Ladouce N, Wincker P, et al. 2009. Development and functional annotation of an 11,303-EST collection from Eucalyptus for studies of cold tolerance. Tree Genet Genomes 5, 317-327.


Lynch M, Walsh B. 1997. Genetics and analysis of quantitative traits. Sinauer Assoc, Sunderland, MA, USA. 980 pp.

MARM. 2008. Anuario de estadística agroalimentaria. Ministerio de Medio Ambiente y Medio Rural y Marino, Madrid. 250 pp. [In Spanish].

Book Section

Westfall RD. 1992. Developing seed transfer zones. In: Handbook of quantitative forest genetics (Fins L, Friedman ST, Brotschol JV, eds). Kluwer Academic Publishers, Boston, MA, USA. pp: 313-398.


Gordo J. 2004. Selección de grandes productores de fruto de Pinus pinea L. en la Meseta Norte. Doctoral thesis. Universidad Politécnica, Madrid. [In Spanish].

Conference Proceedings

Agúndez D, Notivol E. 1994. Annual rhythm height growth variation in Scots pine provenances. Proc II IUFRO Int Conf on "Scots pine Breeding and Genetics", Kaunas (Lithuania), September 12-14. pp. 7-12.

Electronic article

Nakicenovic N, Swart R. 2001. Special report on emissions scenarios. [online]. IPCC Special Repots on Climate Change. Available in [2 March 2010]

The following should be provided when referencing electronic sources:

  • Ø Author's name and initials, or responsible body (if there is more than one, list them).
  • Ø Year of publication.
  • Ø Title of the document being cited. The title of a web page will normally be the main heading on the page, or in the strip at the top of the screen.
  • Ø The title is followed by the electronic medium in square brackets e.g. [online] or [CD-ROM].
  • Ø Place of publication - URL, ftp address, etc - This is the information necessary to locate the document.
  • Ø Date accessed and date of last update for web pages.

Legal Rule or regulation

OJ. 1990. Directive 90/429/CEE of the Council of June 26. Official Journal of the European Union L 224 18/08/1990. pp. 62.

EndNote and RefWorks style files are available ( Right-click on the link and select 'save target as'. Navigate to your EndNote styles folder and save.

  • 8) Tables and figures should be cited consecutively in the text, numbered independently with Arabic numerals and should be self-explanatory. Tables will be headed by a number and title. Explanatory notes that facilitate their interpretation will be included at the foot of the tables. Tables should have defined cells, and must not be created by using the space bar and/or tab keys. Figures can correspond to diagrams or photographs. The figure number and legend will be given at the foot of the figure. After paper acceptance, photographs must be sent separately as image file (jpg, tiff or similar) with at least 300 ppp in the finished size. Only under well-justified circumstances colour photographs will be admitted. Figures prepared with program Excel or similar shall be sent separately in their source program (*xls file), with their data source. The figures and tables must be very high quality and must, therefore, be received in a suitable form and condition to be reproduced.
  • 9) Appendix. If an appendix is needed, it comes after the references.
  • 10) Supporting information may be included at the end.


Checklist for style:

  • - Units and symbols. Use SI units in accord with the recommendations of the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) or Bureau for Poids et Mesures (BIPM).


  • - Abbreviations must defined when first mentioned in the abstract or text [e.g.: "polymerase chain reaction (PCR)"] and again in the tables and figures. Abbreviations must then be used throughout the article, except at the beginning of a sentence.
  • - Language must be English. Exceptionally, papers in Spanish will be accepted.
  • - Spelling must follow either American Standard (Merriam Webster Dictionary), or British Standard spelling (OED).
  • - Style must be that of Scientific English throughout the article.
  • - Formulae. Use an equation editor of mathematical formulae whenever possible. Avoid inserting formulae as images.
  • - Scientific names.

Genus must be written in full the first time an organism is mentioned in the abstract, or text, and in every table and figure. If you are discussing several different species within a genus, so that the genus is the same for each species mentioned, write genus + species in full the first time each new species is mentioned, even if it seems redundant. After the first time, use the genus abbreviation with a period.

Genus and species are always italicized. Do not italicize "spp." or "sensu stricto" or "sensu lato" that may follow genus and species. Genus is italicized when it appears alone (i.e., Phytophthora infections).

Latin binomials or trinomials and authorities, when first mentioned, must be shown for all plants, insects and pathogens (e.g., Pinus pinaster Ait.).

Common and chemical name of pesticides must be given when first mentioned. For example: "Atrazine (2-chloro-4-ethylamino-6-isopropylamino-1,3,5-triazine) was most persistent..."

Soils are identified at the series and family level, or at least the Great Group, when first mentioned.

Botanical cultivars should be marked in single inverted quotation marks or the term cultivar or the abbreviation cv. should be used when first mentioned: (e.g.: poplar ´I-214´ or cv. I-214). After, this can be referred to as I-214 poplar or I-214 cultivar.

  • - Statistical results. In-line statistical results should be presented as the test-statistic followed by degrees of freedom as subscript(s) to the test-statistic (e.g., F1,12 = 1.74 and t8 = 31.8), p < 0.001, p < 0.01, p < 0.05, p = value (for values in between 0.05 and 0.10), or n.s., e.g. (F1,12 = 4.9, p > 0.05). In tables, statistical results should be comprehensive, allowing future meta-analyses. Depending on the details of the analyses, results reported may include parameter estimates, test-statistics, degrees of freedom significance levels and error/residual model information (e.g., error MS and d.f. in ANOVA or regression models). Since exact p-values can be useful for meta-analyses, we recommend that these are quoted even when non-significant, e.g. t23 = 0.25, p = 0.34, or F2,32 = 1.12, p = 0.55). However, non-significant tests (i.e. p > 0.05) should always be interpreted as such, and not reported.

Correction of proofs

Proofs are e-mailed as a PDF, which should be printed and then corrections marked on it. Corrected proofs should be sent to the Editorial Office within three days by e-mail or by fax (+34-91-3572293 or +34 91-3478765). If corrections are not received in due time, the editors reserve the right to perform the corrections that consider most appropriate.


Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

  1. The work described has not been published previously in any language (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a thesis)

  2. The manuscript is not under consideration for publication elsewhere

  3. Authors have followed the author guidelines for the preparation of the manuscript. One pdf file containing text and Tables/Figures; an Accompanying letter presenting  the work; and, optionally, a file with Supplementary Information, are provided.

  4. Its publication has been approved by all co-authors, if any, as well as by the responsible authorities at the institution where the work has been carried out

  5. The authors agree to the automatic transfer of the copyright to the publisher if and when the manuscript is accepted for publication

  6. The manuscript will not be published elsewhere in any language without the consent of the copyright holders
  7. Written permission of the copyright holder had been obtained by the authors for the materials used from other copyrighted sources

Copyright Notice

Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:

  1. Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
  2. Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
  3. Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).


Privacy Statement

The names and email addresses entered in this journal will be used exclusively for the stated purposes of this journal and will not be available for any other purpose or another person.