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Journal of the Operational Research Society
Discussion Papers

An introduction to Discussion Papers

This category of papers is intended to attract submissions of the very highest calibre and will result in papers that:

  • Encourage broader debate in OR and associated disciplines

  • Facilitate highly innovative cross-disciplinary research and applications

  • Strongly influence the future direction of OR

It is anticipated that no more than two such papers will be published each year. 

The papers will be accompanied by commentaries by experts in the field, as well as a response from the authors. They will feature as the lead article in the issue of JORS in which they are published.

An opportunity will be provided for the paper to be presented at an event organised by the Operational Research Society, with time allocated for discussion and a vote of thanks.

Guidelines on the requirements and the submission process can be found below.



Papers are welcome in any area of OR, including the following: methodological innovation, new applications of existing methodology, interfaces between OR and related disciplines, OR education, and current issues in which OR has a role. This list is indicative and is not meant to exclude any contributions that have the potential to be strongly influential.

Papers will be assessed in terms of their potential to make fundamental contributions to the theory or practice of OR. They should become be a key reference point for future work and, therefore, to have good prospects of being heavily cited.

A review paper will not be considered as a Discussion Paper.

The word limit is the same as for any manuscript submitted to JORS.  


Submission Process

Manuscripts should be submitted via the JORS submission portal, which can be accessed via the journal homepage

Authors should also select the "Discussion" article type when prompted to do so in the submission portal.

The papers will be screened by a panel of editors, with the outcome being:

  • allowing the paper to proceed for consideration as a Discussion Paper, or

  • allowing the paper to proceed for consideration for publication but not as a Discussion Paper, or

  • rejecting the paper.

Please note that papers with a narrow technical focus will not be accepted for consideration as a Discussion Paper.

If a paper passes initial screening, then it will proceed to a normal review process, overseen by the Discussion Papers Editor. Once accepted, the Discussion Paper will be expedited for publication. Short commentaries by other experts will be invited by the editors and these will be published at the end of the article, together with a response to these comments from the authors. The paper will be the first to appear in the first available issue of JORS and clearly marked as a Discussion Paper. 


The following submission deadlines will apply:

  • 31 March

  • 30 June

  • 30 September

  • 31 December


Martin H. Kunc, University of Southampton, UK (email)

Said Salhi, University of Kent, UK (email)

Zhe George Zhang, Western Washington University, USA and Simon Fraser University, Canada (email)

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