Policy Press

Publishing with a Purpose

Instructions for authors

What we're looking for
How to Submit
English Language Editing Service
Open Access
Self-archiving and institutional repositories
How to maximise the impact of your article
Contact Us

What we’re looking for

Academic articles should not be longer than 8000 words, including abstract (150 words maximum), notes, tables, figures and references. The journal provides a forum for dialogue between research, policy and practice in the field of families and relationships across the life course. It is underpinned by sociological understandings of the fluid, complex and diverse nature of contemporary relationships, seen in varied social, cultural and historical contexts. While rooted in sociological theory and methods, submissions to Families, Relationships and Societies come from subject areas across the social sciences and related life course disciplines and from policy and practice communities. Papers are expected to have relevance to academic, policy and practitioner audiences, enabling a wide range of perspectives to be brought together in one place to foster innovation and development within disciplines and advance interdisciplinary research and practice.

Open Space: Information on how to submit an Open Space contribution

Open Space offers a unique opportunity to consider facets of family lives, relationships and societies from unexpected and novel (including non-academic) perspectives. It offers a dynamic space for critical engagement with contemporary debates, policy and practice initiatives, empirical research and recent publications in the fields of families, relationships and societies. It has the ability to respond quickly to current issues and include new and/or under-represented voices and stories in shorter pieces and through visual and other innovative methods. Open Space encourages dialogue with a broader community than usually found in academic journals, and presents alternative perspectives and insights to those normally found in academic journal publications. Contributions to this section are invited from all subject and disciplinary areas and can explore any topic that falls within the key themes of the journal. Articles can take a wide variety of formats from debates, review articles, policy or practice overviews, or other ways of engaging with the journal’s themes.

Submissions range between 1-5,000 words and can be single submissions or grouped around a theme: all require a 75 word abstract. Please contact the Open Space editors to discuss the area and format of potential contributions, Esther Dermott (Esther.Dermott@bristol.ac.uk) and Tina Miller (tamiller@brookes.ac.uk).

All articles are refereed to assess their suitability for publication.

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How to Submit

All submissions should be made online at the Families, Relationships and Societies Editorial Manager website: http://frs.edmgr.com, in Word or Rich Text Format (not pdf). New users should first create an account, specify their areas of interest and provide full contact details.

Submissions must be completely anonymised and uploaded without preliminary details, such as title, author, affiliations, abstract or keywords in the text file. All submissions will be subject to anonymous peer-review processes (unless stated otherwise) by referees currently working in the appropriate field.

The editors aim to provide quick decisions and to ensure that submission to publication takes the minimum possible time. Please note: submissions that, in the opinion of the editors, have not been anonymised for review will be returned to authors. The final decision on publication rests with the managing editors. 

For help submitting an article via Editorial Manager, please view our online tutorial.

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Copyright & Permissions

Articles are considered for publication on the understanding that on acceptance the entire copyright shall pass to Policy Press as publisher of Families, Relationships and Societies. Authors will be asked to sign a copyright agreement to this effect. All authors should agree to the copyright assignment. For jointly authored articles the corresponding author may sign on behalf of co-authors provided that s/he has obtained their consent for copyright assignment. When submitting online, the copyright assignment agreement is considered to be signed when the corresponding author checks the relevant box. The copyright assignment agreement can be read here.

Where copyright is not owned by the author(s), the corresponding author is responsible for obtaining the consent of the copyright holder. This includes figures, tables, and excerpts. Evidence of this permission should be provided to Policy Press.

General information on rights and permissions can be found here: http://bristoluniversitypress.co.uk/rights-and-permissions.

To request permission to reproduce any part of articles published in Families, Relationships and Societies please email Policy Press: pp-info@bristol.ac.uk. For information on what is permissible use for different versions of your article please see our policy on self archiving and institutional repositories.

Please also read our Journals Editorial Policies and Ethics Guidelines.

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  • British English spelling and punctuation is preferred.
  • Non-discriminatory language is mandatory.
  • Explanatory notes should be kept to a minimum. If it is necessary to use them, they must be numbered consecutively in the text and listed at the end of the article. Please do not embed notes in the text.
  • Please do not embed bibliographic references in the text, footnotes, live links or macros; the final submitted file should be clear of track changes and ready for print.
  • Tables and charts should be separated from the text and submitted in a Word or Excel file, with their placement in the text clearly indicated by inserting: ‘Table X here’. Please provide numbers, titles and sources (where appropriate).
  • Figures, diagrams and maps should be separated from the text and, ideally, submitted in an Encapsulated PostScript (.eps) file. Figures created in Word or Excel are acceptable in those file formats. If the figures, diagrams and maps are in other formats (i.e. have been pasted into a Word file rather than created in it) please contact dave.j.worth@bristol.ac.uk for advice. Please indicate where figures should be placed in the text, by inserting: ‘Figure X here’ and provide numbers, titles and sources (where appropriate).

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A custom version of the Harvard system of referencing is used:

  • In-text citations: give the author’s surname followed by year of publication in brackets
  • List all references in full at the end of the article and remove any references not cited in the text
  • Book and journal titles should be in italics
  • Website details should be placed at the end of the reference. Do not include dates of access to websites
  • Spell out all acronyms in first instance.

Example of book reference
Dorling, D, 2010, Injustice: Why social inequality persists, Bristol: Policy Press

Example of journal reference
Warin, P, 2012, Non-demand for social rights: A new challenge for social action in France, Journal of Poverty and Social Justice 20, 1, 41–53 

Example of chapter within edited / multi-authored publication 
Levitas, R, 2011, Utopia calling: Eradicating child poverty in the United Kingdom and beyond, in A. Minujin and S. Nandy (eds) Global child poverty and well-being: Measurement, concepts, policy and action, Bristol: Policy Press, 449–73

Example of website reference
House of Commons Debates, 2010, Work and pensions (CSR), Hansard, 4 November, col 337WH,  www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201011/cmhansrd/cm101104/halltext/101104h0001.htm

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English Language Editing Service

Policy Press collaborates with Enago to provide Academic English editing and translation services to help authors get their manuscript submission-ready. A special 20% discount is available for all Policy Press authors. Find out more at: https://www.enago.com/policypress/.

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