Instructions to authors

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Only original contributions with important new scientific information in German, English or French language are called for. Submissions should not exceed 25 manuscript pages, and should be restricted to 10 manuscript pages for regional or applied papers.

Each contribution must contain:
  • title and subtitles, each of them concise and descriptive (not in capital letters only); subtitles may be numbered decimally, not exceeding four digits, the digits separated by full stops (e.g.;
  • following the title name and place of residence all of the author(s), number of figures and tables;
  • English summary. The summary should not be a list of intentions, but a concise presentation of the highlights and results of the paper.
  • Key words
  • an introduction clearly defining the problem
  • a final chapter summarizing the major results and conclusions; a list of references concentrating on key publications which should not exceed one printed page.
  • name and address of the author(s) at the end of the paper.

Submission of the manuscript

1. Manuscripts must preferably be written in English language. To avoid confusion with spacing, right-hand justification should be switched off. Do not use style sheets or templates. Number all pages, starting with 1 on the title page. Please use double line spacing. If the software used to prepare the manuscript can do so, please enable line numbering. Following the author’s name please indicate the address of the institution where your contribution was produced. A short Abstract without paragraphs should be given on the first page of the work, following the title. A summary may be given before the references at the end of more comprehensive works. The references should include references to the relating pages respectively tables or figures which contain the supporting material for the results attained. All manuscripts are subject to peer review. Submission of manuscripts should occur electronically through the journal’s Online Manuscript Management System (in a single WORD or pdf file, including tables and figures). Accentuation Typefaces: Word-processor generated manuscripts should only use boldface and italics. Please do not use capitals for titles and headlines. Units: Use the International System of Units (SI).

2. The final version of the accepted manuscript, prepared preferably using Microsoft Word for Windows (PDF is not acceptable at this stage), should be uploaded to the journals Online Manuscript Management System. All manuscript files including illustrations, (if available as .eps or .tiff files) must be submitted in one compressed file (zip etc.).

3. Submission of a manuscript for publication in ZFG is considered binding assurance that this work has not been and will not be published elsewhere in this form and length.

4. Corrections in proof: only corrections of typesetting errors are accepted. All other changes to the manuscript can only be made at the expense of the author.

5. Illustrations: All illustrations must be numbered consecutively as they are referred to in the paper. Digital halftone figures should have a resolution of at least 300 dpi (.tif, .eps, .jpeg), digital line drawings (only .tif or .eps!) should have a resolution of at least 600 dpi, preferably 1200 dpi. Colour publishing will only be done at the author’s cost.

Bibliographic references

Bibliographic references in the text should follow the examples below, with page references where necessary, or with suffix letters in alphabetical order for more than one publication in the same year: (Smith 1988: 16, 1991), .... Walker & Jones (1986a: 63-84).

References to figures and tables in the text are given as (fig. X) or (table X).


Footnotes are to be numbered consecutively and referred to in the text by cardinal numbers. Footnotes, also written double-spaced, are to be placed with their cardinal numbers at the bottom of the page they occur on.

Mark ups

Author's names are to be typed in capital letters; they will appear as small capitals in the printed text; Italics are to be taken for genus and species names when used with their Latin endings, as well as for single words or text passages to be accentuated. Alternatively continuous underlining may be used; subtitles will automatically be printed in italics and may also be typed in the manuscript as such; underlining is not necessary, however.

References to the literature

Placed at the end of text, headed by References in centered position and without chapter number. References are to be listed alphabetically by author's, editor's or institution's/agency's name when applicable, typed in capital letters and followed by the author's initial. In the case of more than one author the initials precede the following names; the last name is linked by "&". Editors are identified by "ed." or "eds." preceding the year. The year of publication always follows the name, enclosed in round brackets, followed by a colon. Several publications by the same author(s) are listed by year of publication, if the year is the same, add a lowercase character (e.g. 1998a). The title of the publication must be given in full, following the rules of capitalization for normal texts. For monographs, the title is followed by publisher, place of publication, and number of pages. Example: Washburn, A.L. (1980): Geocryology. A survey of periglacial processes and environments. – Wiley, New York, 406 pp.

Journal titles may be abbreviated following the World List of Abbreviations, followed by volume or year's issue number typed in boldface or underlined. First and last page of an article must be given, following a colon. Example: Schumm, S.A. & Lichty, R.W. (1975): Time, space and causality in geomorphology. – American Jour. Sci. 263: 6-28.

For articles published in anthologies etc. the bibliographic references of the volume must be given in full following the article's title and introduced by "in:". Example: Hencher, S.R. (1987): The implications of joints and structures for slope stability. – In: Anderson, M.G. & Richards, K.S. (eds.): Slope stability: 145-186; Wiley.


Illustrations ((drawings, photographs, diagrams) are to be numbered consecutively in one system and in the sequence of their appearance in the text, all described as figures. Tables are to be numbered separately. The editors reserve the right to refuse inclusion of figures or tables. Figures should be sent in electronic form. All data must be metric. On maps a scale bar and either the north direction or grid are to be shown, on sections indicate the horizontal and vertical scale and their orientation. Figures that cannot be reduced to type-area size should be submitted only in exceptional cases. Colour publishing can only be done at the author's cost. Figure captions (with the signature legend where applicable) are to be typed double-spaced on a separate sheet or sheets to be submitted with the manuscript. For papers in German or French, translations of the captions in English should be submitted. Numerical data may be presented either as tables or as diagrams. Margins of error should be stated.

Illustrations in electronic form

Save halftones in a resolution of minimum 300 dpi (black and white), line figures with a final resolution of at least 600 dpi, all at final printing size, data medium disc, CD ROMs. Suitable programs: Photoshop (Imaging), Illustrator 7.0 (graphics). Format: eps, tif or jpeg (no compression). Please mention all details on the data medium (resolution format, program version).


The corresponding author will receive a PDF-proof by e-mail. Corrections must be returned to the publishers by e-mail or fax as soon as possible. Substantial changes to the manuscript and the figures during the proof stage require the approval of the editorial office and can only be carried out at the author's expense. If the corrected page proofs are not returned within the set date, the paper will either be withheld from publication or printed as is.

Optional Open Access (new)

Authors of ZfG have the choice to have their papers made freely available to the public (Optional Open Access). To publish a paper under the Borntraeger Optional Open Access model (OOA), the following guidelines apply: – Authors must inform publisher's production department or the editor-in-chief of their decision to publish their paper under the Optional Open Access model on submission of the final version to the publisher at the latest. For OA pricing please contact the publishers at No further page charges apply for papers with black-and-white pages only. The publication of color pages carries the usual surcharge. Authors will receive an invoice for the OAA charges for payment, indicating the DOI of their paper. After receipt of payment, all access restrictions will immediately be lifted (CC BY NC license; see: The paper is fully citable via the assigned DOI and the paper will be freely accessible for everyone.


Corresponding authors of an article will receive a pdf-file for personal use only. Personal use implies: No publication on private or other websites (self storage, repositories); No distribution in newsgroups or mailing lists etc. Printed author’s reprints are only available on demand and against costs when ordered prior to the printing process. Please contact the publishers together with the final corrections.