Working Papers Introduction and Guidelines

The Bryant University Working Papers Series reflects the scholarly activities and the intellectual contributions of Bryant's outstanding faculty. This site presents the working papers authored or co-authored by Bryant faculty. Such papers are copyrighted by the authors and represent their intellectual property.

What is a working paper?

Working papers are research reports, technical papers, discussion papers and occasional papers. Working papers are sponsored mostly by academic institutions, large organizations and some private sector groups. They are used for research purposes for faculty or others contemplating writing books or articles.

How working papers develop

It is not unusual for a working paper to undergo many changes before it completes its full development and achieves final maturity, say, for example, as an article in a scholarly journal or in the form of a book. It is not unusual for alterations that may occur to a working paper to stem from the feedback and criticism that others in the field provide the author(s). Thus, it is expected that a working paper may exhibit, although not necessarily so,a less elegant and finished appearance as it begins its evolution to become a more formal, finished scholarly contribution to the discipline it represents.

In short, working papers represent the beginnings of a formal and public process as original research in the form of data collection and thought development. As such, working papers frequently represent the previously unarticulated, mostly invisible, generally intangible intellectual contributions that a scholarly community is meant to be about.

A "working paper" summarizes original research in a narrow segment of a field of study, and is intended for publication within a period of one to three years. If the original assumptions are justified, the scope of the working paper may be expanded to a published book or article.

Why do people write a working paper?

Most faculty, doctoral candidates, and others write working papers to help them identify and articulate new ideas and generally make a theoretical and (or) practical contribution to an area of research or field of study. Authors often use working papers to gather feedback from colleagues and experts in the field. Occasionally, they are used to recruit or attract new faculty, or can be a quick way to assess the writing and research abilities of junior faculty members and research associates. Working papers are useful tools to help discover new and conceptual ideas and cutting-edge research and management topics.

The purpose of working papers

Working papers generally are intended to report on the scholarly activities of faculty members. In their capacity as researchers, members of an academic community such as Bryant University are frequently engaged (indeed expected to be actively involved)in a variety of research activities. A working paper typically captures the original work of a faculty-scholar which is intended for publication; it is not unusual for the research reflected in a working paper to become published in professional journal or similar format within a short period of time.

Copies of the Bryant University Working Papers Series can be found in the Douglas and Judith Krupp Library on the Bryant Campus and may be available for onsite consultation. For permission to reproduce or to request a copy, contact the author directly; one way to do this is to refer to the homepages of the author or visit the Campus Directory for e-mail addresses.

Guidelines for Submission

Bryant University Faculty Working Papers Series welcomes submissions if at least one author is affiliated with Bryant University, the paper seeks to advance an understanding of the field in which the author is a professional member, and the paper is potentially of a publishable nature. For manuscripts consistent with the guidelines for the Bryant University Working Paper Series, scholars are invited to send working papers as email attachments to Dr. Keith B. Murray ( If email is not feasible, a paper will be accepted in hard copy with diskette mailed to:

Keith B. Murray
Faculty Suite K
Bryant University
1150 Douglas Pike
Smithfield, RI 02917.

Authors of papers that are accepted for the Working Papers series will receive 5 complimentary copies.

In brief, the paper should have a maximum length of 60 pages and requires:

  1. The document in electronic form (Microsoft Word preferred).
  2. An abstract (150 words or less).
  3. Short author biographies (2-4 sentences long).
  4. Subject keywords (4-7).

Detailed Guidelines

In general, the criteria for submission to the Working Paper Series is a function of the professional criteria governing the disciplinary framework in which a faculty member operates. Manuscripts must be of publishable quality, should be structurally complete, and should consist of original ideas and results, although review papers or meta-studies are also encouraged. Examples include:

  1. Manuscript-length articles (as determined by the professional context or standards in a particular discipline) either submitted for publication or close to ready for publication;
  2. Formally documented and presented research findings;
  3. Draft manuscripts that formally document the development of theoretical or practical contributions to a discipline;
  4. Manuscripts recently published (or accepted for publication).

Submissions will be reviewed and approved by a member of the Advisory Panel or another member of the faculty before they are formally entered into the Working Paper Series. Turnaround time for review is normally 1-2 weeks. Feedback consists primarily of editorial comments on style and completeness, but may also include suggestions on content or ways to improve the research.

Authors should limit their submissions to no more than one per term (Spring, Summer, Fall).

There are no costs or charges to the authors in connection with this publication, nor are authors paid for publication of their papers.

The author's submission package should include: (1) a hard copy of the paper, including any data sheets or appendices, and (2) an electronic copy of the cover page, which will be formatted to meet the requirements of the cover.

Submissions to the Bryant University Faculty Working Paper Series should be sent to:

Professor Keith B. Murray, Editor
Faculty Suite K
Bryant University
1150 Douglas Pike
Smithfield, RI 02917

401.232.6473 (Voice)
401.232.6435 (Fax)