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Become a Writer/Submit an Article

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ARTICLE SUBMISSION GUIDELINES

The Social Innovations Journal invites social innovators and entrepreneurs to submit articles for consideration for publication. SIJ’s mission is to promote innovative ideas, incubate social innovation and thought leadership (i.e., teaching leaders how to think and not what to think) to spark a culture of innovation to create new models and systems change. 

SIJ publications are guided by best practices in data-driven decisions and social innovation. SIJ encourages writers to keep the below definitions and guidelines and definitions in mind when submitting articles. 

Definitions:

  • Social Innovation is driven by the individual/organization’s process to focus on improving products and services to increase social impact. Innovations can be captured through the term ‘disruptive innovations’ that originate in low-end or new market footholds or sustainable innovations that are incremental advances or major breakthroughs.
  • Best practices in data-driven decisions and social innovation or “big data” as reported by Desouza and Smith , is used to describe the growing proliferation of data and our increasing ability to make productive use of it. Data-driven intelligence has been used successfully in technical and business endeavors, but a very different situation prevails in the social arena. There is a large chasm between the potential of data-driven information and its actual use in helping solve social problems. Beyond the infrastructural impediments (information technology, financial, customer information) that social sector users of big data face, data itself can be a problem (missing, incomplete, stored in silos, and policy/regulatory challenges such as privacy and confidentiality). In the social sector, for the most part, there is no big data! However, with the proliferation of open data platforms, citizens are creating new ideas and products such as building global data banks on critical issues, engaging citizens and citizen science, building a cadre of data curators and analysts, and promoting virtual experimentation platforms. 

Guidelines: Below are the guidelines for the submission of both (feature) and short (new innovations/ideas/enterprises) articles.    

When writing your article, please write within the context of why our readership reads the Social Innovations Journal.  Our readership is less interested in the “WHAT” and more interested in the “HOW” as they are hoping to learn and apply this knowledge to their own context.  As such, we ask you to write with most of the bulk of the content focused on “HOW and WHY” your model works.

Once you submit your article we will contact you to go through our editing process.  

Article CHECK LIST before SUBMISSION

  • Please include a title for your article and your byline (including title and accreditations) exactly as you would like them to appear once published.
  • Font should be 12-point for the body of article and Times Roman style.
  • Please remember to cite all sources for your article. Please use the Chicago MLA Style Guide for citing sources.  We do NOT publish footnotes.  We publish endnotes.  http://www.socialinnovationsjournal.org/more/become-a-writer-submit-an-article
  • Note we do NOT publish sidebars to article content.
  • For all graphics as well as charts, tables, and figures please submit as separate files. Do NOT embed graphics. Please submit only high-resolution images for publishing.  For all photos and images include a suggested caption and photo credit information (if required) including headshots of authors.
  • For article length refer to the guidelines on our website or below. http://www.socialinnovationsjournal.org/more/become-a-writer-submit-an-article
  • Please define acronyms the first time they appear.  Define trade or sector-specific terminology to ensure that your article is reader friendly.  Keep in mind that you are writing to a broad audience that includes international readers.
  • Submit an abbreviated author bio for all authors at the time of article submission.
  • Please include a brief summary of your article and submit it along with your article.

If you have a concern, question or need additional support please do not hesitate to contact Alescia Dingle at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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What Works Article Guidelines (Innovations, Enterprises, Public/Private Partnerships)

Architecture

  • Article length: 1,000 to 1,500 words.
  • Provide one primary illustration (such as a photo, graph) that will serve as a visual introduction to the social innovation.
  • Obtain a brief bio. of Author(s)

Outline/Components 

  • Frame the issue and define the social problem and context clearly.
  • Offer the innovative solution and explain how your idea/model works.  Include narrative regarding how you will know you have achieved success (i.e.  outcome and impact measures).
  • Differentiate your idea/model from the competition: How is the solution distinct from what similar organizations offer? Why is this model preferable to or more successful than its competitors? What local context or circumstances gave rise to this particular problem and this particular solution?
  • Provide insight into how the model is financed/funded.
  • Discuss scaling, scaling impact, social and policy implications and/or risks.

Tone and audience

  • Bottom line writing: Begin with a concise executive summary (about 10% of total word count) that gives the gist of the article. Follow this with a narrative that is guided by the outline above.
  • Academic framework: Place the social innovation within the context of best practice research. However, minimize use of citations and footnotes.
  • Audience: Write for regional program officers and leaders of foundations, not-for-profits, government, academia and the private sector who have a vested interest in increasing their regional impact through high-impact social innovation. 

Format

  • Submit the article text as a Word file. Make sure figures/tables are fully editable (NOT LINKED OR EMBEDDED).
  • Submit image files (such as jpegs) SEPARATELY.
  • Provide notes/citations. Please only include ENDNOTES.  NO FOOTNOTES. SIJ uses The Chicago Manual of Style (www.chicagomanualofstyle.org).

Feature Article Guidelines (Data/Research Driven)

Architecture

  • Article length: 4,000 to 6,000 words.
  • Provide one primary illustration (such as a photo) that will serve as a visual introduction to the social innovation.
  • If appropriate, provide 1-2 tables or graphs to help illustrate a major point and to break up the text. 

Outline/Components 

  • Frame the issue and define the social problem and context clearly.
  • Offer the innovative solution and explain how your idea/model works.  
  • Differentiate your idea/model from the competition: How is the solution distinct from what similar organizations offer? Why is this model preferable to or more successful than its competitors? What local context or circumstances gave rise to this particular problem and this particular solution?
  • Include data/research documenting your success (i.e. outcome and impact measures).
  • Discuss the expected local, national, international social impact.
  • Provide insight into how the model is financed/funded.
  • Discuss scaling, scaling impact, social and policy implications and/or risks.

Tone and audience

  • Bottom line writing: Begin with a concise executive summary (about 10% of total word count) that gives the gist of the article. Follow this with a narrative that is guided by the outline above.
  • Academic framework: Place the social innovation within the context of best practice research. However, minimize use of citations and footnotes.
  • Audience: Write for regional program officers and leaders of foundations, nonprofits, government, academia and the private sector who have a vested interest in increasing their regional impact through high-impact social innovation. 

Format

  • Submit the article text as a Word file. Make sure figures/tables are fully editable (NOT LINKED OR EMBEDDED).
  • Submit art files (such as jpegs) SEPARATELY.
  • Provide notes/citations. NO FOOTNOTES OR NOTES (CAN BE LISTED AS A SIDEBAR). SIJ uses The Chicago Manual of Style (www.chicagomanualofstyle.org).