Journal published by The Royal Society.
Continuing its long history of influential scientific publishing, Philosophical Transactions A publishes high quality theme issues on topics of current importance and general interest within the physical, mathematical and engineering sciences, guest-edited by leading authorities and comprising new research, reviews and opinions from prominent researchers. Each issue aims to create an original and authoritative synthesis, often bridging traditional disciplines, which showcases current developments and provides a foundation for future research, applications and policy decisions.
Issues are either based on the internationally acclaimed Royal Society Discussion Meetings or are stand-alone topics commissioned by the journal or proposed by the guest editors. All contributions are invited and the journal does not accept unsolicited stand-alone papers. All articles are peer reviewed and edited to the highest standards.
History of the journal
The Royal Society was founded in 1660 to promote the new experimental philosophy of that time, embodying the principles of Sir Francis Bacon. Henry Oldenburg was appointed as the first secretary to the Society and he was also the first editor of the Society’s journal Philosophical Transactions. The first issue of Philosophical Transactions appeared in March 1665 and featured Oldenburg’s correspondence with leading European scientists. In its formative years Isaac Newton had seventeen papers published in the journal including his first paper – New Theory about Light and Colours – which effectively served to launch his scientific career in 1672. In the same year his new reflecting telescope was described and the original drawing was also published in the journal. Philosophical Transactions has also published the work of Charles Darwin, Michael Faraday, William Herschel and many more celebrated names in science. In 1887 the journal expanded to become two separate publications, one serving the biological sciences (‘B’) and the other serving the physical sciences (‘A’). Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society has the prestige of being the world’s longest running science journal.
Philosophical Transactions A has an international editorial board with expertise across the physical sciences. See who is currently on the board.
Contributing to Philosophical Transactions A
The journal only publishes invited papers as part of theme issues. Guest editing an issue gives you an opportunity to put together a collection of cutting-edge and thought-provoking papers that will be useful to other researchers in the field. Find out more about the benefits of editing or contributing to an issue.
Conditions of publication
Articles must not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere. The main findings of the article should not have been reported in the mass media. Like many journals, Philosophical Transactions A employs a strict embargo policy where the reporting of a scientific article by the media is embargoed until a specific time. The Editor has final authority in all matters relating to publication. Please also refer to our Publishing Ethics Policy.
Philosophical Transactions A is indexed in PubMed, Web of Science and Scopus, as well as many other indexes.