Submission Guidelines


The Editorial Board seeks original articles which document theories and methods that Applied Behavioural Science (ABS) practitioners may use to bring about positive change in inter-individual relationships, in groups and teams, in organisations, in communities or in society as a whole, and which are likely to be of interest to a wide range of informed readers in the practitioner community.   Articles must not have been previously published or be currently under consideration for publication elsewhere. 

The Purpose of Practising Social Change

Practising Social Change is oriented towards a diverse range of busy ABS practitioners who are interested in creating positive social-change. Their areas of practice include leadership, community development, adult education, youth development, team development, organisation development, coaching, diversity, inclusion and social justice, therapies, conflict resolution, mediation, spiritual support and other relevant methods and approaches.

Practitioner efforts might be directed towards any of the many possible realms for societal improvement, such as human development processes in organisations, community relations, education, democratic processes, economic development, environmental protection, racial and ethnic justice, gender equity, health care, housing, food, LGBT issues, peacemaking, promotion of the arts, refugee concerns, poverty alleviation, and violence prevention.

The journal seeks to enhance existing theory and practice, to challenge accepted theory and methods where appropriate, and to articulate emerging theory and innovative methods, by offering insights and discoveries from an author’s experience, different points of view, or new possibilities for the reader’s own work.


Proposals, in abstract form of circa 300 words, should be sent electronically to the editor at Such proposals should, under three headings, cite the theories or methods concerned, describe the real-world experience of applying them, and the lessons learned and/or the implications for theory or practice.

Review Process

Within two weeks of submission, authors are notified by email that their proposal has either been declined or has been accepted as competitive for publication.  The Editor may also elect to provide advice to the author, and/or invite them to resubmit their proposal.  If a proposal is accepted, the author will receive a commission from the Editor which may include guidance on content, style and format, and an agreed deadline for submission to the journal. 

Suggested Format for Articles

Practitioners, being busy, often want to glean interesting ideas from theory and practice for quick implementation in their own work. To facilitate this, Practising Social Change requires authors to keep the length of their articles short, and offers the following format for those who would appreciate guidance on how their writing might be structured.  Please note, however, that this structure is offered as a suggestion only, and is not a prescribed format for the journal.

  1. Introduction – the essence of the article.  Describe the subject matter and the contribution the article is making to current knowledge and/or practice; and provide a ‘map’ for the flow or direction of the article.
  2. The Field – practitioners do not want all the background to the topic but it is important to summarise what others have done before (a broad, historical overview which might describe the popularity and impact of the topic), how you concur with, or differ from, the way the topic is treated in the literature or in practice (perhaps you have discovered something that is ‘missing’ that needs to be considered; perhaps there is a social justice issue that needs to be addressed) and how your article  adds to this.  Include the key questions that your article addresses.
  3. Methodology – describe the basis for the development of the propositions or insights in your article, your research methods if your article is research-based, the object(s) of your study (eg the focus organisations or individuals), and the data or the experiences which drew you to write about the topic of your article.
  4. Findings – the body of the text: your findings (the results of your research or practice, and why they were as they were - if known, and how they were similar or different from those of other researchers) and your interpretations, insights and conclusions therefrom.
  5. Discussion – the implications of your findings (or questions unveiled) for practitioners.
  6. Conclusion: summarise the main points of the article for the reader’s further consideration or practice.  Those who have limitations on their time can thus confine their reading to the Introduction and the Conclusion, turn away with something of value, and return to the middle sections of the article for more at a later point. 

General Manuscript Requirements

  • Articles should be between 3000 - 3500 words and written in clear, straightforward and lively prose.  The Editor will waive this word-count limit if it does not support the explication of the subject matter.
  • Applied Behavioural Science is a theory-grounded and evidence-based practice field.  We ask authors to make reference to any theories that are relevant to their subject matter, and to describe the practice examples which give rise to any propositions they are making for new theoretical frameworks, methods or tools.
  • We require permission (supplied electronically) for any references to client organisations.
  • We do not accept material which is clearly intended to promote the author’s own consulting practice.
  • Subheadings may be used.
  • All charts, diagrams, drawings and tables should be submitted in electronic form.  Our house-style for articles does not accommodate photographic images.
  • Contributions should be accompanied by a photograph (for our website) and a short, one-paragraph biography of the author, which lists any published books in print. Biographies should be no more than 150 words.
  • Footnotes should only be used where necessary. References to other publications should appear as endnotes.

Further guidance and technical assistance is available from the Editor:  The Editor is also able to recommend the services of a freelance copy-editor to authors who wish to improve the standard of their manuscript prior to submission.

Final Review

A Member of the Editorial Board, together with the Editor, will support the author to take their article to publication, utilising the Liz Lerman Critical Response Process:  More information about how we employ this process is available from the Editor.

The Editor reserves the right to decline an article for publication if it does not fit with the purpose or requirements of the journal.

Editorial Approach

As an e-journal, Practising Social Change has a global readership, and is edited for clarity and readability in British English which is one of the reference norms for English as it is spoken, written and taught in the world.  Different forms of written English (eg American English, Canadian English, Australian English, South African English, New Zealand English and the Hiberno-English of Ireland as well as British English) vary in their use of grammar, vocabulary, spelling, punctuation, idioms and the formatting of dates and numbers, but they are all mutually intelligible.  Variations in spelling (which date from a time when spelling was not standardised) are the most distinctive differences between the many forms of the language; our editorial policy is to preserve the system of spelling preferred by authors so that they may share their published work readily with their colleagues, clients and students.

Copyright Agreement

Prior to publication, authors will be provided with our Contributor Copyright Policy, and will be asked to confirm their agreement with its terms.