Manuscript Submissions
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Manuscript Submission Guidelines

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, sociology and computational applications, JPER presents the most vital contemporary trends and issues in planning theory, practice, and pedagogy. JPER is published quarterly by SAGE Publications on behalf of ACSP.

Manuscripts should clearly demonstrate their relevance to planning. JPER addresses planning practice and education at all levels of government, by nongovernmental organizations, and in all substantive areas.

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. In the manuscript, redact all self citations and omit all other identifying information, such as author name, affiliation, biography, contact information, acknowledgments, forthcoming articles, and works in progress. Authors should use active voice in their writing and carefully copyedit manuscripts before submitting.

Manuscripts should not exceed 8,000 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 8,000 words are strongly discouraged and will not go to peer review without special approval from the editors. Notes, additional figures, supplementary materials, and detailed methodological explanations may be included in separate supplementary files. 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 with substantially similar form or content. The editors will run manuscripts through a plagiarism check. Authors in doubt about what constitutes prior publication should consult the editors.

Review Process: After an initial evaluation, editors send manuscripts deemed appropriate for the journal to reviewers in a double-blind review process. Decisions generally occur within four months of submission. Authors can see the status of their submissions through the online submission system and should feel free to contact the editors with any concerns.

Research Articles: Research articles should make clear the research question, its importance and pertinence to planning, how the methods address the question, what the results found, and their interpretation. The editors welcome a diverse mix of submissions representing the range of the planning profession. Quantitative, qualitative and theory researchers should feel free to submit their work. In addition, scholars should help advance analytical comparative and global-scale methods. Contributions to and applications of other literatures relevant to planners such as urban geography, welfare economics, interest-group politics and policy analysis, are also welcome.

Instruction Articles: Manuscripts on pedagogical topics include descriptive accounts of innovative approaches to teaching; local analyses of student recruitment, advising, or alumni career successes; or demonstrations of classroom exercises and techniques. Narratives of a specific course or teaching innovation should have a base in pedagogical theories and offer strong evidence of learning outcomes. Instructional articles should include sufficient evidentiary base to support the validity of their conclusions. Typically, more than one instance of curriculum delivery should evaluate the evidentiary base. Articles should not identify individuals. For detailed guidelines on instruction articles, see our Guidelines for Pedagogy Papers at our electronic submission site.

Reports: As a publication of ACSP, reports of general importance to ACSP and its membership are welcome and serve as a record of the organizations’ actions and ideas. Eligible materials might be reports of ACSP study commissions and general addresses given at ACSP conferences. The JPER editors will ordinarily invite entries in the Reports section and subject them to a limited review process.

Commentary: Essays addressing current issues and developments in planning education or scholarship fit the Commentary section. Speculative arguments may be acceptable if the editors consider them convincing, important, or provocative. Commentary manuscripts should not exceed 4000 words.

Letters: Letters responding to articles, commentary, reviews, or editorials are welcome. Authors will have the opportunity to reply. Contributors should address the substance of issues and not attack individuals.

Book Reviews: Those interested in reviewing books or other materials, please send by e-mail a brief proposal to Katrin B. Anacker, Book Review Editor, that explains 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.

Style, Spelling, and Usage: Manuscripts should conform to requirements set forth in the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th and 16th editions (University of Chicago Press 2003 and 2010). JPER's spelling authority is Webster's Third New International Dictionary (Merriam-Webster Co. 2002) and its later editions.

Tables and Figures: During the review stage, all tables and figures should appear in the manuscript, either within the manuscript or at the end, with captions and sequential numbers.

References: Citations should appear parenthetically with 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 needed for specific arguments or findings. For details, see the Chicago Manual. Citations of statutes, government regulations, and court decisions should appear 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). References appear in alphabetical order at the end of the manuscript.

Inquiries should go to JPER Managing Editor Karen Lowrie ( You can also contact JPER Co-Editors Clinton Andrews (, 848-932-2808) and Frank Popper (, 848-932-2740).


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.


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