Editorial Policies

Focus and Scope

Research in Sierra Leone Studies (RISLS): Weave is an international, scholarly, refereed, multidisciplinary, open access, electronic journal dedicated to advancing the critical assessment and publication of research about Sierra Leone. To facilitate the easy accessibility, searchability, and visibility of the journal on the Internet, the journal "handle" (i.e. short name) is "Weave", a word that captures the journal's overall approach to research as the weaving of divergent strands and networks of ideas, concepts, methods, and disciplines, etc., as well as celebrates a traditional Sierra Leonean industry (weaving) that crosses ethnic, regional, and gender lines.

Weave is a global forum as well as a public space on the Internet through which to centralize, disseminate, and access (including otherwise difficult-to-reach scholarly work being done in Sierra Leone) research about Sierra Leone to a larger national and diasporic audience and its communities of readers, writers, scholars and academics. The journal welcomes scholarship that focuses on the national, global, international, interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary, and intercultural contexts of Sierra Leone research from a diversity of disciplinary, theoretical, and methodical approaches.

Weave adheres to a rigorous and thorough peer review process by a team of editors and reviewers who reinforces the multidisciplinary perspectives of the journal. Weave will be committed in showcasing the broadest range of Sierra Leone Studies, and the journal is receptive to a variety of topics and subjects that speak to the heterogeneity of the field. Manuscripts in Sierra Leone's national languages for the Drama, Fiction and Poetry section are welcome.

As an open access e-journal, Weave will use the electronic medium to promote and expand Sierra Leone Studies. The following are some of Weave's intended, distinctive contributions to Sierra Leone Studies:

  • become the preeminent portal, reference point, and valuable resource on the Internet to explore, research, debate, publish, and learn about Sierra Leone scholarship;
  • as a policy, at least one of the members of the Editorial Board will be based in Sierra Leone;
  • publish work, whether general or specific, that investigates an innovative approach to its subject matter;
  • publish theses abstracts (master's and doctoral) on all subjects Sierra Leonean;
  • encourage scholarship that establishes relationships and conversations on subjects that suggest national, dasporic and global contexts for the Sierra Leone experience;
  • combine rigorously refereed academic articles with the publication of interviews, and poetry, fiction and drama about Sierra Leone and its diaspora;
  • publish special theme editions when possible;*
  • promote the use of Editorial Assistants to begin to develop  a culture of knowledge production and dissemination among up-coming scholars and graduate students working on research about Sierra Leone;**
  • continue to innovate and pursue the highest standards in electronic publishing in advancing Sierra Leone studies;
  • provide Universities and Colleges in Sierra Leone without access to the Internet with a print version of each volume without charge;
  • plan to launch a print edition of the journal which will be published contemporaneously with the electronic version.

*Thematic and Special Issues: Weave publishes thematic and special issues and welcomes submission of topics for such thematic editions. The proposal (of about 1,000 words emailed to the editor) of such issues is evaluated by the journal's Editorial Board. For example, proposals can focus on a theme, concept, or debate or be dedicated to the celebration and evaluation of a particular scholar's research and scholarly contribution(s) to Sierra Leone studies. Thematic/special issues are edited by the guest editor(s); the selection, evaluation, and acceptance of articles published in the edition are entrusted to the guest editor(s). Final approval and publication of a thematic/special issue rests with the journal's Editorial Board. The Editorial Board will evaluate the appropriateness of each proposal in terms of (1) pertinence of the theme or focus of the special issue with Weave publication focus and scope, and (2) importance of its contributions to research and scholarship in the field. In its review process, the Editorial Board has the prerogative to reject any specific contribution to the special issue which does not meet the standards of the publication and the discipline, or which does not further the purpose of the proposed special issue. The Editorial Board also reserves the right to schedule the publication of a special issue in a manner which maintains the balance between regular and special issues.

** Editorial Assistants: In keeping with the advantages of publishing scholarship online, the commitment to peer-reviewed and open access scholarship, and the related benefits of training and learning in new media and technology and scholarship and their application to Sierra Leone Studies, Weave appoints advanced graduate students and junior faculty to work with the journal as editorial assistants. Weave editorial assistants work with the journal's Editor in the production processes of all materials published in the journal;work with the journal affords editorial assistants with knowledge and expertise in the processes of editing, new media scholarship and technology, the publishing industry, methods and new knowledge management of scholarship about Sierra Leone research. In addition to editorial work with the journal, editorial assistants engage with the journal's efforts to be listed in and linked to university libraries, appropriate websites, and other bibliographical and data-gathering and preservation resources.


Section Policies


Unchecked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed


Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed


Weave publishes interviews with scholars, academics, writers (published poets, novelists, playwrights, for example) and researchers writing on Sierra Leone themes.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Unchecked Peer Reviewed

Book Reviews

This section provides critiques of recent books and reports on Sierra Leone. Upload review directly to the website by registering as an author and submitting to "Book Review" Section.  We publish reviews of books up to two years only.

The format of book reviews should follow our house guidelines and should be 1,000-2,000 in length (includes footnotes). The title of the review should include a complete bibliographic citation for the work (i.e., title and subtitle of the work, author, place of publication, publisher, date of publication, edition, format [paperback or hardback/hardcover], pages, special features [maps, color plates, illustrations, etc.], price and ISBN [13-digit ISBN where possible].


  • Mohamed Kamara
Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Unchecked Peer Reviewed

Point of View and Record


This general rubric has two categories:

1) Point of View. Under this category, registered members of the journal can contribute their positions on thorny or current academic, intellectual, political, socio-economic, and artistic issues relevant to Sierra Leone.  Word limit: 1,500-3,000 words.

2) Record. Contributions under this category will be primarily informational on matters relating to all aspects of Sierra Leonean life and experience. Word limit: 500-1,000 words.

While submissions to these categories are not affected by the peer-review requirement, they are still expected to meet the stated standards of rigor and academic integrity the journal promotes. Final publication of any contribution to these categories rests with the Editor.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Unchecked Peer Reviewed

Poetry, Fiction, and Drama

Poems 40 lines or less should not exceed 5 per submission; stories and drama: 3,000-6,000 words.

Poems, fiction, and drama written in Sierra Leone's national languages are welcome.

  • A. Onipede Hollist
Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Unchecked Peer Reviewed

Peer Review Process

Weave adheres to a blind peer review process. It is the responsibility of the editorial team to maintain high editorial standards and to ensure that the journal adheres to its stated aims and objectives. When a paper is submitted, the editor first decides if it is suitable for inclusion and falls within the journal's purview. If the article is tangential to the journal's areas of interest, either it will be rejected immediately or the editor will ask the author to resubmit it after it has been revised.

After this first step, the evaluation of Research Articles submitted is undertaken through a double-blind peer review. The Editor and/or Section Editor select two (sometimes three) independent reviewers from among members of the International Board of Advisors and outside it who do research in the same area as the author and are subject specialists. Reviewers are asked to review a submission using the following  criteria: originality of research and analyses, review of the literature, the nature of the contribution to the field, the lucidity of the arguments, and the quality of the writing. In order to ensure an appropriate review, author name(s) should not appear anywhere in the manuscript. The reviewers then judge the paper and return it to the editor, who passes the reviewers' anonymous comments back to the author. Anonymity is strictly maintained. Neither the author nor the reviewers know each other's identity.

If the reviewers request that an article be revised, the author has the opportunity to amend the article and resubmit it for review. At this second review stage, the Editor decides if the changes the author has made have taken into account all the points raised in the initial reviews. Accordingly, the paper will be accepted or will receive a final rejection. The Editorial Board approves for publication all peer-reviewed contributions to Weave.

See Section Policies in About the Journal for policies pertaining to different sections of the journal.


Publication Frequency

Research in Sierra Leone Studies (RISLS): Weave will be published two times a year.


Open Access Policy

This journal provides immediate open access to its content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge.



This journal utilizes the LOCKSS system to create a distributed archiving system among participating libraries and permits those libraries to create permanent archives of the journal for purposes of preservation and restoration. More...


Research in Sierra Leone Studies (RISLS): Weave:ISSN: 2167-9835