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Manuscript Submissions to JPER
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The Journal of Planning Education and Research (JPER) is the official journal of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP) and consistently ranks among leading peer-reviewed planning journals. Aimed at scholars and educators in urban and regional planning, political science, policy analysis, urban geography, economics, and sociology, JPER presents the most vital contemporary trends and issues in planning theory, practice, and pedagogy. JPER is published by SAGE Publications on behalf of ACSP.


Electronic Submission: To submit an article, please visit our online submission and review system at Prepare your manuscript in Microsoft Word, double-spaced, in 12-point font. Redact all self citations in your manuscript and omit all other identifying information, such as author name, affiliation, biography, contact information, acknowledgments, forthcoming articles, and works in progress. This information can be added if your paper is accepted for publication. Our online system saves author contact information, title, abstract, and keywords separately during submission. Authors should use active voice in their writing and carefully copyedit manuscripts before submitting.

Manuscripts should not exceed 9,000 words, including figures, tables, and references. Smaller tables and figures equate to 250 words, if they can be published one half page or less; larger tables and figures count for 500 words. Submissions exceeding 9,000 words are strongly discouraged and will not go to peer review without special dispensation from the editors. Notes, additional figures, supplementary materials, and detailed methodological explanations may be included in a separate file of no more than 3,000 words, which may be published online as an appendix. The abstract should be 100 words or less and summarize the purpose, methods, and findings of your paper.

Submission of a manuscript implies the author's commitment to publish in this journal. An author submitting a manuscript to JPER should not submit it to another journal; nor should the manuscript repeat information published elsewhere in substantially similar form or with substantially similar content. Authors in doubt about what constitutes prior publication should consult the editors.

Review Process: After an initial evaluation by the editors, regular manuscripts deemed appropriate for the journal are sent to three reviewers in a double-blind review process. Decisions are generally made within four months of submission. Authors can monitor the status of their submissions through the online submission system and should feel free to contact the editors with any concerns. Once manuscripts are accepted by the editors and forwarded to the publisher (SAGE) in final form, it generally takes about six months for them to appear in print.

Research Articles:
Research articles should make clear the research question, why it is important and pertinent to planning, how the research procedures address the question, what results have been obtained, and how these results should be interpreted. Both quantitative researchers and those whose scholarship is qualitative or theoretical should consider their work for submission.

The editors welcome a diverse mix of submissions representing the breadth of the planning profession, and are hospitable to wide-ranging views and schools of thought. In addition, scholars are encouraged to advance the frontiers of analytical methods used in planning, and to present robust research in a comparative context and/or at the global scale. Contributions to and applications of other literature relevant to planners (such as urban geography, welfare economics, interest-group politics, and policy analysis) are welcome as well.

Manuscripts should clearly demonstrate their relevance to planning. JPER defines planning as concerned with public actions that are efficient, effective, and equitable. JPER addresses planning practice at all levels of government and by nongovernmental organizations and in all substantive areas.

Instruction Articles: Manuscripts concerned with pedagogical topics also are considered and may include descriptive accounts of innovative approaches to teaching; locally derived analyses of student recruitment, advising, or alumni career successes; or illustrations of classroom exercises and techniques. Accounts of a specific course or teaching innovation should be grounded in pedagogical theories and offer strong evidence of learning outcomes to support their conclusions. Instructional articles should include sufficient evidentiary base to support the validity of their conclusions. Typically, more than one instance of curriculum delivery is preferred to evaluate whether sufficient evidentiary base exists. Accounts of student outcomes or learning should not identify individuals. For detailed guidelines on instruction articles, please see our Guidelines for Pedagogy Papers.

Reports: As a publication of ACSP, reports of general importance to ACSP and its membership are welcome and serve as a record of the actions and ideas that propel the organization of planning education. Eligible materials include, but are not limited to, reports of ACSP study commissions and general addresses given at ACSP conferences. Entries in the Reports section will ordinarily be invited and subject to a limited review process.

Commentary: Essays addressing current issues and developments in planning education or scholarship are welcome for the Commentary section. Speculative arguments may be accepted for publication if they are seen as convincing, important, or provocative. Commentary manuscripts should not exceed 10 typewritten pages and are subject to a limited review process.

Letters: Letters responding to articles, commentary, reviews, or editorials are welcome. Authors will be offered the opportunity to reply. Contributors should address the substance of issues in a way that avoids attacking individuals.

Style, Spelling, and Usage: Manuscripts should conform to requirements set forth in the Chicago Manual of Style, fifteenth & sixteenth editions (University of Chicago Press 2003 & 2010, ( JPER's spelling authority is Webster's Third New International Dictionary (Merriam-Webster Co. 2002).

Tables and Figures: During the review stage, all tables and figures should be embedded within the manuscript, and they should be captioned and numbered sequentially. Tables should be formatted in standard table format with separate columns and rows. Upon acceptance, tables must be placed at the end of the text file, one table per page, with callouts indicating placement within the text (e.g., "Table 1 here"). Figures must be uploaded as separate, high-resolution, native files.

References and Notes: References should be cited in the text using the author's last name, year of publication, and page numbers where appropriate. For example, (Turner and Murray 2001), (Wheeler 2000, 130), (Florida Department of Environmental Regulation 1987, 129-43). Page numbers are necessary whenever a specific argument or finding, rather than the general focus of a work, is cited. For details, see the Chicago Manual. Statutes, government regulations, and court decisions should be cited in the text without a corresponding reference list entry using the style presented in The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation, nineteenth edition (Harvard Law Review Association 2010). Notes should be typed double-spaced at the end of the manuscript. Length and number should be kept to a minimum, and they should not be used for the purpose of citation or acknowledgments.



Those interested in reviewing books or other materials, please send an e-mail and a brief resume to Katrin B. Anacker, the Review Editor, indicating your area of expertise. Professor Anacker also welcomes suggestions for materials that merit review in JPER. You can reach her at George Mason University, School of Public Policy, 3351 N. Fairfax Drive, MSN 3B1, Arlington, VA 22201; by email ( ); by phone (703-993-2262); or by fax (703-993-8215). Detailed guidelines for writing book reviews are posted at our electronic submission site (


The Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning promotes education, research, service and outreach in the United States and throughout the world by seeking to:

  • recognize diverse needs and interests in planning;
  • improve and enhance the accreditation process, and;
  • strengthen the role of planning education in colleges and universities through publications, conferences, and community engagement;
  • extend planning beyond the classroom into the world of practice.