Call For Papers – Community Development and Health Equity

Special issue of the Community Development Journal

Special issue editors:
Thara Raj, UK
Jennie Popay, Lancaster University, UK
Rebecca Mead, Lancaster University, UK
Aylish MacKenzie, UK

Scope, relevance and significance of the proposed theme:
Around the world inequalities in life expectancy, in chronic conditions and in wellbeing are widening. The COVID-19 pandemic has made these inequalities more visible and exacerbated them. In all countries, actions by communities of interest and place have been central to the pandemic response. In the future community development and/or empowerment approaches have a key role to play in supporting more effective community action to ensure that the recovery process addresses the social inequalities driving health inequalities. However, if these benefits are to be maximised the theory and praxis of contemporary community development and empowerment approaches in the health field need to be opened up to challenge and debate.

The WHO’s commission on social determinants of health, contributed to a hugely influential international public health research and practice movement for greater health equity. Community approaches are prominent in this movement, but they are dominated by an assets-based model that is increasingly restricted to an inward gaze on community psychosocial capacities and proximal neighbourhood conditions. Recovery from COVID-19 will continue unequally across the globe, following the same fault lines that create and sustain existing inequities in health outcomes, unless the recovery process reduces social inequalities. If community development is to contribute to this we need to utilise a more radical body of knowledge and practice. This might include drawing on approaches from beyond the community development field that incorporate related forms of community action, social participation, empowerment and activism.

When reflecting on the pandemic, we can critique the missed opportunity for an inclusive community development approach to decision-making which could have lessened the wider impacts of COVID-19. It has been commonly recognised that the crisis management approach has led to severe decline in mental, social and, physical health and we need to explore how communities of interest and/or place can begin to heal. This special issue intends to interrogate how in the future as countries recover from the pandemic community development and related approaches can contribute to greater social and health equity by involving communities in the decisions that affect their lives.

The goal of this special issue of the Community Development Journal is therefore to bring together contributions from researchers and practitioners from around the world exploring the potential for community development and similar approaches to achieving greater health equity. Contributions can focus on theory and/or practice grounded in community based approaches that foreground an outward gaze on political and social transformation for greater social and health equity.

We seek submissions of papers that are critical in nature and which can demonstrate learning that can be applied across different geographies locally, nationally and internationally. Papers do not need to be about Covid-19. Papers can be theoretical and/or empirical and should present original work that has not previously been published. Papers with case studies are welcome.

A focus on the structural inequalities that drive health inequalities will be central to all contribution. Topics that could be covered include (but are not limited to):
– Power and community development
– Radical assets-based approaches to community development
– Community approaches in contemporary policy
– Co-production, alliances, coalitions and partnerships
– Ethical considerations
– Critique of lifestyle-based approaches within community development

Potential contributors should send an abstract of up to 500 words with a title, an outline of the rationale, scope and content of the article to arnithararaj [AT] yahoo [DOT] com by 26th May 2022 with the subject heading CDJSpecialIssue23.

The name of the author(s) should be supplied, including full contact details.

Abstracts will be reviewed by the Special Issue team, and potential contributors notified by 30 June 2022.

Full articles
Shortlisted authors will be invited to submit their first full version by 30th November 2022. Submissions should follow the journal’s style guidelines, which can be found here:

If your abstract is shortlisted, this does not guarantee publication of the article in the special issue. Submissions will be refereed in the usual way, which means some may be rejected and some may require revisions. We will endeavour to place all accepted articles in the special issue, but if this is full, then some articles may be placed in another issue of the journal. Decision for inclusion will fall to the editors of this special issue. Translation into English of the manuscript should be taken care of by the author.

Papers should be between 5,000 and 7,000 words and should not exceed 7,000 words.

Time Scale:
26th May 2022: 500 word abstract/proposal outline due
30th June 2022: Abstracts reviewed and potential authors notified
30th November 2022: First full version of paper to be submitted
1st December 2022 to 28th April 2023: Review process
Final publication – TBC

CALL FOR ABSTRACTS: The Ashgate Research Companion to Community Development

Abstracts due by 29th May 2015

Edited by Dr Lynda Shevellar and Dr Peter Westoby of The University of Queensland, Australia, the aim of the (provisionally titled) Ashgate Research Companion to Community Development is to provide scholars and graduate students with a comprehensive and authoritative state-of-the-art review of the current research in this subject.

As a topic, it is particularly attractive owing to its inter-disciplinary nature. In addition to community development scholars, the work will appeal to graduates and academics working within the fields of social work, sociology, political science, and development studies. The research companion will be aimed towards the academic library market. Authors will be drawn from around the world, with their writing receiving assistance from an international peer review panel, including Emeritus Professor Marjorie Mayo, Emeritus
Professor Jim Ife, Associate Professor James DeFilippis and Dr Akwugo Emejulu.

The process

Abstracts of 500 words are due by 29th May 2015. All authors will be notified of the final decision by 31st August 2015. Selected authors will then be invited to contribute a full chapter of 6,500 words, due March 2016. Chapters will undergo a peer review process with senior scholars in community development, to assist in the further development of writing.

The final manuscript will be delivered to Ashgate in February 2017, for publication and release in 2017.

What we are seeking

Abstracts are now being sought for book chapters from authors undertaking
community development research in any of the following areas:

  • Populations facing forced displacement such as asylum seekers, refugees and
    people enduring development induced displacement
  • Social development in post-conflict or transition communities
  • Violence in a domestic sphere such as domestic violence and child protection
  • Responses to indigenous marginalization
  • Climate change mitigation and adaptation
  • Food sovereignty and security and the politics of food
  • Survival development – including responses to natural disasters and pandemics

Although the book is focused upon community development, scholars engaged in community-oriented research in cognate disciplines are also encouraged to submit an abstract.

Please send your 500-word abstract, (including contact details and affiliations) by email to Dr Lynda Shevellar by the 29th May 2015. Email:

“‘Race’, Ethnicity and Community Development” – expressions of interest requested

This is for a proposed book, to be edited by Gary Craig and others, on ‘race’, ethnicity and community development for the series Rethinking Community Development, to be published by The Policy Press, a leading UK social and public policy publisher.

At this stage, the title has been accepted as part of the series, and we are seeking short expressions of interest (100 words) to contribute chapters. Once the chapter outlines have been agreed, then a full proposal will be submitted to The Policy Press for review and final acceptance.

The chapters, which can be drawn from anywhere across the world, will be no more than 6000 words long and should address some aspect of how community development works within a context defined by different ethnic groups, cultures and/or religions.

Although many countries have had a mix of ethnic groups within their borders for thousands of years, one of the major social and economic trends of the post Second World War period has been the increasing globalisation of migration. This has led to many countries now having countries in which there is a mix of minority populations alongside a settled majority, all generally defined in terms of their ‘race’ or ethnicity. There has been no publication to date which has addressed the role that community development might play in addressing work across ethnic boundaries.

Contributions might include work of the following kinds:

1. Work within specific minorities (e.g. capacity building or empowerment work)

2. Work with specific types of migrant: (e.g. with refugees, economic migrants or particularly excluded groups such as Gypsies)

3. Work with migrants within specific ‘industrial sectors (e.g. migrant domestic workers)

4. Work between minorities/migrant and majority communities

5. Work in situations of conflict (e.g. interethnic work)

6. Work to assert the rights of First Nations people.

If you are interested in contributing to this publication, please send a note with your organisational affiliation and a summary of the proposed content of the chapter – at this stage no more than 100 words – to as soon as possible. He will acknowledge your interest and let you know as soon as possible if he thinks it will fit the proposed publicatio.