Content Types

Primary research formats

Article

An Article is a substantial, novel research study of high quality and general interest to the energy community. Articles often draw on several techniques or approaches. The main text (excluding the abstract, Methods section, references, tables and figure legends) is 3,000 words. Articles can have up to 8 display items (figures and/or tables). As a guideline, Articles allow up to 50 references (excluding those cited exclusively in Methods). The maximum title length is 150 characters (including spaces). The abstract should be no more than 150 words and is unreferenced; it contains a brief account of the background and rationale of the work, followed by a statement of the main conclusions introduced by the phrase "Here we show" or some equivalent. An introduction (without heading) of up to 500 words of referenced text expands on the background to the work (some overlap with the abstract is acceptable), and is followed by a concise, focused account of the findings, ending with one or two short paragraphs of discussion. The main text should be divided by succinct topical headings of no more than 60 characters (including spaces) to aid readers.

Articles include received/accepted dates and may be accompanied by Supplementary Information. Articles are peer reviewed, and authors must provide a competing financial interests statement before publication.

Analysis

An Analysis is an exploratory research study based on analysis of technologies, systems, interventions or policies that lead to novel and arresting conclusions of importance to a broad audience. The main text (excluding the abstract, Methods section, references, tables and figure legends) is 3,000 words. Analyses can have up to 8 display items (figures and/or tables). As a guideline, Analyses allow up to 50 references (excluding those cited exclusively in Methods). The maximum title length is 150 characters (including spaces). The abstract should be no more than 150 words and is unreferenced; it contains a brief account of the background and rationale of the work, followed by a statement of the main conclusions introduced by the phrase "Here we show" or some equivalent. An introduction (without heading) of up to 500 words of referenced text expands on the background to the work (some overlap with the abstract is acceptable), and is followed by a concise, focused account of the findings, ending with one or two short paragraphs of discussion. The main text should be divided by succinct topical headings of no more than 60 characters (including spaces) to aid readers.

Analyses include received/accepted dates and may be accompanied by Supplementary Information. Analyses are peer reviewed, and authors must provide a competing financial interests statement before publication. Examples of Analyses can be found here.

Other formats

Review

A Review is an authoritative, balanced survey of recent developments in a research field. Although Reviews should be recognized as scholarly by specialists in the field, they should be written with a view to informing non-specialist readers. Thus, Reviews should be presented using straightforward prose, avoiding excessive jargon and technical detail. Reviews should be no more than 6,000 words long and typically include no more than 8 display items (figures, tables or boxes).

As a guideline, Reviews allow up to 100 references; citations should be selective. Footnotes are not used. The scope of a Review should be broad enough that it is not dominated by the work of a single research institution, and particularly not by the authors’ own work.

Review authors must provide a competing financial interests statement before publication. Reviews include received/accepted dates. Reviews are always peer reviewed to ensure factual accuracy, appropriate citations and scholarly balance.

Perspective

A Perspective is intended to provide a forum for authors to discuss models and ideas from a personal viewpoint. They are more forward looking and/or speculative than Reviews and may take a narrower field of view. They may be opinionated but should remain balanced and are intended to stimulate discussion and new approaches. Perspectives may also advocate a controversial position or present a speculative hypothesis. Two articles advocating opposite sides in a research controversy are normally published as Perspectives.

Perspectives should not normally exceed 3,000 words. As a guidelines, Perspectives allow up to 50 references; citations should be selective. Perspectives should include no more than 4 display items (figures, tables and/or boxes). As with Reviews, many Perspectives are invited by the editors, so it is advisable to send a pre-submission enquiry including a synopsis before preparing a manuscript for formal submission.

Perspective authors must provide a competing financial interests statement before publication. Perspectives include received/accepted dates. Perspectives are always peer reviewed and edited by the editors in consultation with the author.

News & Views

News & Views articles inform readers about the latest advances in the energy field, as reported in recently published papers (in Nature Energy or elsewhere) or at scientific meetings. Unsolicited contributions will not normally be considered, although prospective authors are welcome to make proposals. News & Views articles are not peer reviewed, but undergo editing in consultation with the author. Authors must provide a competing financial interests statement before publication.

Correspondence

The Correspondence section provides readers with a forum for comment on papers published in a previous issue of the journal, or to discuss issues relevant to energy. A Correspondence should not exceed more than one printed page and is typically 250–500 words; it is limited to one display item and, as guideline, Correspondence allows up to 10 references. Article titles are omitted from the reference list. Titles for Correspondences are supplied by the editors.

In cases where a Correspondence is critical of a previous research paper, the authors of the criticized paper are given the opportunity to publish a brief reply. The criticism of opinions or other secondary matter does not involve an automatic right of reply. Critical comments should be sent to the authors of the paper under discussion before submission to Nature Energy, so that disputes can be resolved directly whenever possible and points where both parties agree removed from the submitted contribution. If after 2 weeks the original authors have not responded, this should be indicated at submission. Otherwise, when the contribution is submitted to Nature Energy, copies of the Correspondence with the original authors should be enclosed for the editor’s information.

Refutations of previous publications are always peer-reviewed. Other types of Correspondence may be peer-reviewed at the editors’ discretion. Authors must submit a competing financial interests statement.

Comment

Comment articles can focus on policy, science and society or other issues related to energy. Single-author articles are preferred as this is an ‘opinion’ section of the journal. Comments are usually commissioned by the editors, but proposals are welcome. They should be of immediate interest to a broad readership and should be written in an accessible, non-technical style. Figures and diagrams are encouraged, but are not a requirement. Comments are typically no longer than 2,000 words and include up to 20 references. Article titles are omitted from the reference list.

Comment authors must provide a competing financial interests statement before publication. Comments may be peer-reviewed at the editors’ discretion.

Books & Arts

The Books & Arts section comprises timely reviews of books and other cultural and pedagogical resources of interest to those working in energy. The pieces are limited to one page. They are usually commissioned, though unsolicited contributions will be considered.

Authors must provide a competing financial interests statement before publication.

Features

These sections are written and commissioned by the journal editors. They do not contain unsolicited material. We are, however, keen to accept freelance pitches of exclusive stories, particularly conference coverage from locations where we do not have staff, or reports from interesting field work.

All of our Features are written with a lively, proactive tone, using language that is clear even to readers for whom English is not their native tongue. Stories should be accessible to those with a general interest and background in science.

For details on how to pitch to Nature Energy, contact the editor at natureenergy@nature.com.