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About Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling

This page includes information about the aims and scope of Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling, editorial policies, open access and article-processing charges, the peer review process and other information. For details of how to prepare and submit a manuscript through the online submission system, please see the instructions for authors.

Aims & scope

Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling (CASM) is a highly multidisciplinary modeling and simulation journal that serves as a unique forum for original, high-quality peer-reviewed papers with a specific interest and scope limited to agent-based and complex network-based modeling paradigms for Complex Adaptive Systems (CAS). The highly multidisciplinary scope of CASM spans any domain of CAS. Possible areas of interest range from the Life Sciences (E.g. Biological Networks and agent-based models), Ecology (E.g. Agent-based/Individual-based models), Social Sciences (Agent-based simulation, Social Network Analysis), Scientometrics (E.g. Citation Networks) to large-scale Complex Adaptive COmmunicatiOn Networks and environmentS (CACOONS) such as Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN), Body Sensor Networks, Peer-to-Peer (P2P) networks, pervasive mobile networks, service oriented architecture, smart grid and the Internet of Things.

In general, submitted papers should have the following key elements:

  •  A clear focus on a specific area of CAS E.g. ecology, social sciences, large scale communication networks, biological sciences etc.)
  •  Either focus on an agent-based simulation model or else a complex network model based on data from CAS (e.g. Citation networks, Gene regulatory Networks, Social networks, Ecological Networks etc.).

General guidelines for articles:

  •  CASM has a strongly multidisciplinary editorial board and readership. Therefore authors need to be very careful that their articles have been written in a style that is comprehensible by a broad and multidisciplinary audience. Authors must avoid excessive usage of domain-specific jargon/terminologies without formally introducing these terms in the article. In addition, any concepts specific to a discipline must be explained in the article for the general readership of CASM. Thus, an article on Gene regulatory networks should be written with the goal that it may also be accessible to a number of social science researchers using Social Network Analysis and vice versa. Likewise an article written by Computer Scientists for Wireless sensor networks must also take into consideration CASM readership of researchers from Social and Biological Sciences and so on.
  •  Authors are advised to use general terms (such as agent-based modeling and complex networks) instead of using domain-specific terms, wherever possible.
  •  Submissions which are not in line with the above criteria or those which are of a purely or largely theoretical/Mathematical nature or have been written in a very domain specific manner or appear to have a limited audience may be considered as out of scope of CASM and rejected without review.


For information regarding example topics and cover letter requirements, see Publication and peer review process, below.

Open access

All articles published by Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling are made freely and permanently accessible online immediately upon publication, without subscription charges or registration barriers. Further information about open access can be found here.

Authors of articles published in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling are the copyright holders of their articles and have granted to any third party, in advance and in perpetuity, the right to use, reproduce or disseminate the article, according to the SpringerOpen copyright and license agreement.

For authors who are US government employees or are prevented from being copyright holders for similar reasons, BioMed Central can accommodate non-standard copyright lines. Please contact us if further information is needed.

Article-processing charges

The publication costs for Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling are covered by the journal, so authors do not need to pay an article-processing charge.

Indexing services

SpringerOpen is working closely with Thomson Reuters (ISI) to ensure that citation analysis of articles published in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling will be available.

Publication and peer review process

Example topics in Complex Networks:

  •  All types of complex networks such as biological, social, citation, ecological networks etc.
  •  Agent-based modeling in the domain of CACOONS such as modeling concepts related to the internet, intranet, P2P, ad-hoc and Wireless Sensor Networks as networks/graphs.
  •  Network generation, visualization, modeling and simulation

Example topics in Agent-based Models:

  •  Agent-based Modeling case studies in ecology, business, biology, social sciences, operations research, economics, computer sciences, communication networks, artificial intelligence, robotics etc.
  •  Software engineering of agent-based and complex network models
  •  Verification and validation of agent-based and complex network models.
  •  Exploratory agent-based models for conducting feasibility and proof-of-concept studies
  •  Agent-based models and their respective non-textual quantitative descriptions such as DescRiptivE Agent-based Models (DREAM) or text based descriptions of models (E.g. the ODD protocol) for inter-disciplinary model comparisons.
  •  Validated agent-based models for verified and validated models such as using empirical validation approaches or Virtual Overlay MultiAgent System (VOMAS) or any other methodology.

Cover Letter requirements:

Each submitted article must be accompanied with a cover letter. Papers without a cover letter giving the details as noted below may be returned to the authors without any review:

  1. Names and official email addresses of all authors.
  2. Single sentence summarizing the research contribution and significance of the paper in the domain of complex adaptive systems modeling.
  3. If there is any related paper currently under review in another conference or journal or else has already been published/in press in another venue (conference, workshop or journal etc.), a statement of how the submitted paper differs from the other paper(s) as well as a copy of the paper may be attached during the manuscript submission process for referees to evaluate the significance of the changes.
  4. Exact contributions details of each individual author should be clarified. Each author must have contributed significantly and all people who have contributed significantly must be listed as authors. Ghost, Gift, and other forms of unethical authorships are strongly discouraged. For reference, please review guidelines given here.
  5. Which particular discipline (related to CAS) is being explored in the manuscript? (E.g. social sciences, economics, ecology, biology, CACOONS etc.)
  6. Particular modeling technique used in the paper: One or both of Agent-based Modeling or Complex Network modeling. (Except in the case of a Special Issue)
  7. Particular Modeling tool used: NetLogo, Repast, Swarm, Network Workbench, Pajek, Cytoscape, Gephi, Visone etc.
  8. In case of an agent-based model, how was the validation performed?
  9. In the case of a review paper, the following is expected to be mentioned in the cover letter. Authors should write "The authors certify that . . .”:
  • the paper does not cite more than a handful of conference proceedings papers. (E.g. 5-10)
  • a large number of key journal papers have been discussed (E.g. Generally a minimum of 70-100+ archival journal articles from key journals are expected to be discussed in a review paper)
  • state of the art papers have been discussed including recent papers from the current year as well as other papers which may currently be in-press

Authors will be able to check the progress of their manuscript through the submission system at any time by logging into My Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling, a personalized section of the site.

Portability of peer review

In order to support efficient and thorough peer review, we aim to reduce the number of times a manuscript is re-reviewed after rejection from Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling, thereby speeding up the publication process and reducing the burden on peer reviewers. Therefore, please note that, if a manuscript is not accepted for publication in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling and the authors choose to submit a revised version to another SpringerOpen journal, we will pass the reviews on to the other journal's editors at the authors' request. We will reveal the reviewers' names to the handling editor for editorial purposes unless reviewers let us know when they return their report that they do not wish us to share their report with another SpringerOpen journal.


Please see our reprints website for information about reprinting articles.


Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling will consider supplements based on proceedings (full articles or meeting abstracts), reviews or research. All articles submitted for publication in supplements are subject to peer review. Published supplements are fully searchable and freely accessible online and can also be produced in print. For further information, please contact us.

Editorial policies

Any manuscript, or substantial parts of it, submitted to the journal must not be under consideration by any other journal. In general, the manuscript should not have already been published in any journal or other citable form, although it may have been deposited on a preprint server. Authors are required to ensure that no material submitted as part of a manuscript infringes existing copyrights, or the rights of a third party.

Correspondence concerning articles published in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling is encouraged. A 'post a comment' feature is available on all articles published by Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling. Comments will be moderated by the editorial office (see our Comment policy for further information) and linked to the full-text version of the article, if suitable.

Editorial standards

SpringerOpen is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). In order to safeguard the quality of SpringerOpen journal publications, Springer has developed a policy on Publishing Integrity which is in line with the philosophy of COPE.

We follow the principle that we have a prime duty to maintain the integrity of the scientific record. Springer’s Policy on Publishing Integrity addresses:

  • Clear definitions of what violation of Publishing Integrity is.
  • A manual on how to identify such a violation (in the document referred to as an Act of Misconduct).
  • Clear (COPE) examples of what such an Act of Misconduct looks like in practice.
  • Clearly defined actions which have to be undertaken by the Editor and Springer when such an Act is a clearly proven fact.
  • Q & A – a useful list of Questions and Answers on the definition of Publishing Integrity.

Please find the full document of Springer's Policy on Publishing Integrity here.

Data and materials release

Submission of a manuscript to Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling implies that readily reproducible materials described in the manuscript, including all relevant raw data, will be freely available to any scientist wishing to use them for non-commercial purposes.

Any 'in press' articles cited within the references and necessary for the reviewers' assessment of the manuscript should be made available if requested by the editorial office.

Appeals and complaints

Authors who wish to appeal a rejection or make a complaint should, in the first instance, contact the Editor-in-Chief who will provide details of the journal's complaints procedure.

Competing interests

Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling requires authors to declare any competing financial or other interest in relation to their work. All competing interests that are declared will be listed at the end of published articles. Where an author gives no competing interests, the listing will read 'The author(s) declare that they have no competing interests'.

Plagiarism detection

Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling's publisher, SpringerOpen, is a member of the CrossCheck plagiarism detection initiative. In cases of suspected plagiarism CrossCheck is available to the editors of Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling to detect instances of overlapping and similar text in submitted manuscripts by using the plagiarism detection tool iThenticate. CrossCheck is a multi-publisher initiative allowing screening of published and submitted content for originality.

Citing articles in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling

Articles in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling should be cited in the same way as articles in a traditional journal. Because articles are not printed, they do not have page numbers; instead, they are given a unique article number.

Article citations follow this format:

Authors: Title. complex adapt syst model [year], [volume number]:[article number].

e.g. Roberts LD, Hassall DG, Winegar DA, Haselden JN, Nicholls AW, Griffin JL: Increased hepatic oxidative metabolism distinguishes the action of Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor delta from Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor gamma in the Ob/Ob mouse. complex adapt syst model 2009, 1:115.

refers to article 115 from Volume 1 of the journal.

Why publish your article in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling?

High visibility

Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling's open access policy allows maximum visibility of articles published in the journal as they are available to a wide, global audience. Articles that have been especially highly accessed are highlighted with a 'Highly accessed' graphic, which appears on the journal's contents pages and search results.

Speed of publication

Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling offers a fast publication schedule whilst maintaining rigorous peer review; all articles must be submitted online, and peer review is managed fully electronically (articles are distributed in PDF form, which is automatically generated from the submitted files). Articles will be published with their final citation after acceptance, in both fully browsable web form, and as a formatted PDF; the article will then be available through Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling and SpringerOpen.


Online publication in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling gives authors the opportunity to publish large datasets, large numbers of color illustrations and moving pictures, to display data in a form that can be read directly by other software packages so as to allow readers to manipulate the data for themselves, and to create all relevant links (for example to relevant databases and papers).

Promotion and press coverage

Articles published in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling are included in article alerts and regular email updates. Some may be included in abstract books mailed to academics and are highlighted on Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling's pages and on the SpringerOpen homepage.

In addition, articles published in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling may be promoted by press releases to the general or scientific press. These activities increase the exposure and number of accesses for articles published in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling.

Authors of articles published in Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling retain the copyright of their articles and are free to reproduce and disseminate their work (for further details, see the copyright and license agreement.

For further information about the advantages of publishing in a journal from SpringerOpen, please click here.