Author Guidelines

The Public Contract Law Journal, the quarterly scholarly publication of the ABA Public Contract Law Section, is committed to the publication of peer-reviewed articles that present analysis and insight into issues affecting the broad scope of public contract law and procurement at the federal, state, and municipal levels. The Journal stands within the legal community as a focal point for the examination of timely legal issues confronting the public contract community.

Article Length. Feature articles traditionally are between 10,000 and 15,000 words, or 50-to-60 double-spaced pages in length. Depending on the topic and depth of focus, the Journal also accepts some shorter articles.

Style. The writing should be appropriate for a law review article. To that end, authors should

  • Use gender-neutral language
  • Avoid long quotations
  • Avoid excess verbiage
  • Avoid using a long word when a short one will do
  • Avoid using a foreign phrase, scientific word, or jargon if you can think of a more common English equivalent
  • Avoid overworked figures of speech
  • Avoid excessive capitalization
  • Avoid excessive use of commas

Footnotes. All references must be completely and accurately cited, using the citation style of The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation, Nineteenth Edition.

Author Biography. Please include a one-sentence description of your current professional affiliation.

Article Preparation. Use footnotes rather than internal references; number pages; italicize rather than underline; use Word, WordPerfect, or any standard program. Submit all articles as e-mail attachments.

Prior Publication. The editors of the Public Contract Law Journal discourage simultaneous submission of manuscripts to other publications. Unless otherwise clearly noted, all manuscripts are expected to be original.

Peer-Review. Your article will be peer reviewed by one or more members of the journal’s editorial board.

Copyright. The American Bar Association retains the copyright to all material published in Public Contract Law Journal. All authors, including federal employees, are asked to sign a copyright agreement that grants to the ABA the exclusive right of first publication, the nonexclusive right to reprint, and the right to use the work in other ABA media, including electronic, print, and other. In addition, federal employees are asked to sign a statement indicating whether they completed the article on their own time or their employer’s time.

Abstract. If your article is accepted for publication, you will be asked to provide a one-to-two paragraph abstract, approximately 250 words. Abstracts will be posted on the website of the Public Contract Law Journal,, after the article is published.

Send Manuscripts to:

Wendy J. Smith
Periodicals Editor
American Bar Association


Patricia H. Wittie
Wittie Law, PLLC
3847 Macomb St., NW
Washington, DC 20016
(202) 686-5306


Brittany Finder
Senior Managing Editor, Student Editorial Board