Editorial > Guidelines for authors




The journal aims to publish a balanced mix of articles from those geoscience disciplines involved in the exploration, appraisal and development of hydrocarbon resources. Articles concerning exploration geology and geophysics, geochemistry and petrophysics, reservoir geology and reservoir engineering are welcomed.

This journal publishes research articles, review articles and thematic sets.


If you have not already done so, we encourage you to register for an ORCID iD. You can use your iD to log into our submission system. More information can be found on orcid.org


All submissions to Petroleum Geoscience should be made online via http://www.editorialmanager.com/petgeo/default.aspx. Full instructions can be found within that site. There are additional help buttons throughout. You will need to register before you can submit. If you have previously submitted a paper, you should already be in the system.

Before submitting a manuscript, it is recommended that you have the following to hand:


(*If you load PDF files the merged file might be very large)

(It is a good idea to put all your files in one folder.)

The submission package will guide you through the processes for submitting your files and confirmation/approval.

You can check the status of your manuscript at any time through the system by:


Recommended utilities


Papers are accepted on the understanding that they have not been submitted or published elsewhere and become copyright of the Geological Society. Papers are also accepted on the understanding that all authors consent to the submission. All authors should have seen and approved the version that you submit.

Papers should be arranged as follows.



List all references cited. The author is responsible for ensuring that the references are correct. Text citations to references should be made thus: (Glennie 1984; Pinnock & Clitheroe 1997; Law et al. 2000) or Hesthammer (1999a, b), etc. depending on the context. The order in the text should be as here - chronological then alphabetical. If the reference has 3 or more authors it should appear as first-named author et al. in the text, but with all authors listed in the reference list. However, if the reference has more than 7 authors, it should appear in the ref. list as the first 3 authors plus et al. Within the reference list order all references alphabetically by first author name. For single- and two-author references, list them alphabetically and then chronologically. Do not use repeat rules for the same name. With references of 3 or more authors, list these chronologically rather than alphabetically by second, third author. Authors' names in the reference list should be typed in upper and lower case (as should editors of a volume in which the authors' paper appears). Authors' initials should be preceded by a space, i.e. Smith, A. B., not Smith,A. B. Do not abbreviate journal titles. Volume numbers should be in bold; journal titles and book titles (and the titles of PhD theses) in italics. Books do not require the total number of pages.

Corbett, P.W.M. & Ringrose, P.S. 1992. Laminated elastic reservoirs. Paper SPE 24699, presented at the 67th Annual SPE Technical Conference and Exhibition, Madrid, 7-11 June.

Garrett, S.W., Atherton, T. & Hurst, A. 2000. Lower Cretaceous deep-water sandstone reservoirs of the UK Central North Sea. Petroleum Geoscience, 6, 231-240.

Glennie, K. (ed.) 1984. Introduction to the Petroleum Geology of the North Sea. Blackwell Science, Oxford.

Guy, M. 1992. Facies analysis of the Kopervik sand interval. In: Hardman, R.F.P. (ed.) Exploration Britain: exploration insights for the next decade. Geological Society, London, Special Publications, 67, 187-220.

Hesthammer, J. 1999a. Improving seismic data. First Break, 16, 151-167.

Hesthammer, J. 1999b. Analysis of fault geometry and internal fault block deformation in the Gullfaks region, northern North Sea. PhD thesis, University of Bergen, Norway.

Refereeing and editing

A member of the editorial board will send your paper to at least two referees. They will handle the papers through the reviewing and scientific editing procedure and approve the finalized script for publication. We expect the reviewing and editing procedure to take about three to five months in the case of a paper requiring little revision. We are of course dependent on the goodwill of unpaid reviewers to achieve these targets.

You can keep track of this process through the online submissions package.

Colour charges

From 2018 there will be no charges for colour figures in this journal.

Format and tips for calculating the length

Authors are encouraged to restrict their papers to a maximum of 12 journal pages, including figures, tables and references. Please submit the paper as single column double-line spaced text, line numbers down the left hand side are useful for reviewing purposes. Place every Figure and Table on separate pages along with the accompanying caption.

In the final typeset version the main text is in double column format. Final printed page size: 296 mm deep by 210 mm wide. Maximum final size of illustrations: 240 mm deep by 178 mm wide. Single column width: 85 mm. Number of words per page: 900.
Titles, authors and affiliations: for a short title and one author, allow 100 words; for a longer title and/or several authors and affiliations, allow up to 300 words.

Abstract: straightforward word count

Text: straightforward word count (1000 words = 1 page)

References: allow 40 references per page

Figures: single column - estimate 1/4 or 1/2 page depending on depth of figure; for double and 1 1/2 column figures - estimate 1/2 or 1 page depending on depth of figure. Landscape figures = whole page

Figure captions: straightforward word count unless it is a 1 1/2 column figure, in which case don't include caption in count.

Tables: across one column (max total 65 characters width including three character space between each column) - estimate 1/4 or 1/2 page depending on length of table; across two columns - estimate 1/2 or 1 page depending on the length of the table. Landscape tables = whole page.


The Production Editor will write to the corresponding author notifying them of when the paper is due to be published. The paper will be copyedited and then sent to an external typesetter. PDF proofs will be sent out asap by email. We do not generally send revised proofs to the author. The production process takes six to eight weeks from acceptance to online publication.


You will be given instructions on how to download a PDF of your paper from the online version of the Journal. Paper offprints can be ordered; instructions will be sent with the proof email.

Supplementary data

Limited space in the article means that detailed material, such as locality lists and analytical data, will be made available as online supplementary material. Supplementary material can also include supporting figures, videos and other related files. These files hosted on the GSL figshare portal at http://geolsoc.figshare.com

1. Supplementary material should be provided on first submission of your article.

2. If your supplementary material is already available via an online data repository, please provide the relevant DOI in the form of a hyperlink, for example http://doi.org/10.6084/m9.figshare.1322110.

3. We accept any file formats; however, authors are encouraged to provide analytical data in comma delimited format to allow reanalysis.

4. There is 1 GB file size limit for supplementary material, however, our submission system allows a maximum file size of 5 MB. For any supplementary material files that are larger than 5 MB, please contact the Production Editor at pg@geolsoc.org.uk.

5. The supplementary files must be self-contained and should include captions and/or legends and any references. References that are only cited within the supplementary files must not be included in the main reference list of the article.

6. In the main article, you should not refer to individual tables or figures from the supplementary material article - the main article must be intelligible without reference to the supplementary material.

7. In the main article, you should include a statement between the abstract and the start of the main text in the form: 'Supplementary material: [description of material, including a description of each item if possible] is available at'.

8. The hyperlink and DOI of the supplementary material will be automatically allocated unless the author provides the relevant hyperlink and/or DOI as outlined above in point 2.