Call for Submissions - the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy


The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy was established in 1997 by the Editor, Dr James Fieser, in order to make widely available articles on topics and authors in philosophy that are written in a style that is accessible to intelligent, general readers. At present, the Editor is assisted by a number of 'Area Editors,' who solicit entries for the Encyclopedia and ensure that they meet its standards. Articles are 'refereed' by reviewers external to the Editorial Board.

Articles are published on the World Wide Web at :

Thoemmes Publishers (Bristol, UK) have indicated an interest in publishing the Encyclopedia in a print format, once it has achieved a sufficient breadth and range of articles.

For further information, contact

Professor William Sweet at;
or at: Department of Philosophy, St. Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, Nova Scotia B2G 2W5 CANADA telephone: office: (1-902-) 867-2341; fax: (1-902-) 867-3243

or Dr James Fieser, General Editor, at

SUBMISSIONS: Prospective authors may propose articles on any traditional philosophy topic or figure that is not currently listed in the IEP. Authors may also offer to replace any "proto-articles," which are identifiable by the inclusion of the initials IEP at the foot of the article. Please check with the one of the Editors, or with the list of articles in production posted on the web site, to avoid duplicating a topic currently reserved. When contacting the editor, please indicate (a) your educational credentials and/or university affiliation, (b) the exact proposed article title, and (c) a tentative date of completion.


FORMAL STYLE. All articles should be written in a formal style, modeled after the style of articles in standard encyclopedias, such as the Encyclopedia Britannica, the Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, or the Encyclopedia of Philosophy edited by Paul Edwards. The primary purpose of the articles is to present information, and not to defend an original thesis.

SIMPLE STYLE. Articles should be written in a style that is accessible to intelligent but general readers. Most users of the IEP are undergraduate philosophy students or philosophically curious web surfers. To best serve these users, authors should minimize unnecessary technical vocabulary.

OPENING SUMMARY. The opening of all articles should contain a one-paragraph summary of the article topic. The length should be about 150-200 words. The purpose of the summary is to give readers a quick overview of the issue -- as they might find in a short dictionary of philosophy. Please see the article on Fichte as an example.

LENGTH. There are no space restrictions, and authors are thus encouraged to err on the side of being too long rather than too short. Articles on major philosophers or major topics, such as Descartes or epistemology, should be between 15-30 double spaced pages. Articles on minor figures or sub-topics, such as Thomas Brown or panpsychism, can be shorter, but do not necessarily need to be.

FORMAT FOR ARTICLES ON TOPICS. The opening sentence of the summary paragraph should be a general definition of the term being used, such as, "The term 'category' means ultimate or fundamental division." The opening of the article body should say something about the origin of the term, the context in which the term is used, or alternative definitions of the term. The article will typically consist of a chronological survey of philosophical theories relating to the term. Where appropriate, include traditional criticisms of the theories in question. Please see the article on legal positivism as an example.

FORMAT FOR ARTICLES ON PEOPLE. The body of the article should begin with a biography of the author. The bulk of the article will consist of a discussion of the author's main philosophical contributions; in most cases a topical presentation of this material is preferred over a strictly chronological presentation. The discussion might include influences on the philosopher, traditional criticisms of the philosopher, and the impact of the philosopher on later philosophers.

Please see the article on Husserl as an example.

SENDING ARTICLES. When possible, authors should submit articles in HTML form. Authors with no experience in this should send the article as a MS Word document through an e-mail attachment.

Authors should use only minimal formatting, and, unless necessary, avoid tables and columns.

Entries should be sent to Prof. Sweet or Prof. Fieser through an e-mail attachment.

HYPERLINKS TO INCLUDE / AVOID. When appropriate, include hyperlinks in your article to other IEP articles. Please see the article on ethics as an example. However, do not include any hyperlinks to non-IEP web sites. The IEP aims at being a self-contained resource, rather than a link list. Also, as external links require continual updating, we hope to avoid this time consuming task.

AUTHOR COPYRIGHT AND LICENSING AGREEMENT. The author of an article enters into an agreement with the IEP such that (1) The author grants exclusive license to the IEP to use and distribute the article through internet media as well as other possible media such as printed or CD ROM formats. (2) The author retains copyright to his/her article; the author also retains the right to publish the article in a format that does not compete with the IEP in nature and scope. (3) The IEP reserves the right to discontinue using an article including but not limited to situations in which the author is no longer able to update or revise the article as needed.