Children's Research Digest - Call for Submissions before 31 August

Background to the Children’s Research Network

The Children’s Research Network for Ireland and Northern Ireland is a membership organisation that aims to support the research community to better understand and improve the lives of children and young people, by:

  • creating and maintaining an inclusive, independent, non-profit network
  • sharing information, knowledge, experience, learning and skills.

Since the launch of the network in 2010, there are now over 300 members drawn from academia, government and the community and voluntary sectors of children’s research throughout the island of Ireland. The network seeks to:

  • establish links between researchers in different sectors of this research community
  • develop structures and mechanisms to promote the sharing of information, joint learning, joint working and the promotion of better understanding across the different sectors
  • link experienced and early career researchers
  • develop a range of membership services that support researchers in this field to build better technical skills.

The Network is funded by The Atlantic Philanthropies and the Department of Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA). We are grateful for the specific support of the DCYA in funding the publication of the Children’s Research Digest.

Overview of the Children’s Research Digest

The key objectives of the Children’s Research Digest can be summarised as:

  • providing a forum for practitioners and academics who are conducting research on children’s issues to share their research findings or information on on-going research
  • allowing research information and findings to be disseminated in a format that is accessible, succinct and provides a good summary of research on children’s issues in Ireland and Northern Ireland
  • allowing the members to find out more about on-going research that members are engaged in so as to promote greater linkages and discussion on relevant research.

Volume 3, Issue 2

Transitions in the lives of children and young people

Guest Editor: Dr. Deirdre Horgan, Lecturer School of Applied Social Studies, UCC           

We are pleased to make a call for submissions on this issue on the theme of transitions in the lives of children and young people. In previous issues of the Digest, the topic of the role of transitions and changes has arisen in relation to a variety of settings, themes and stages of childhood and young adulthood. Transition plays an important role in the lives of all children and young people, yet how they manage these transitions and the supports available to manage them can have profound impacts on their lives. Transition refers to movements or changes from one period or state into another and these changes can occur either suddenly or over a gradual period. Some transitions are predefined by external structures such as the education system and the law and common transitions include starting pre-school, primary school, moving to secondary school and transition to adulthood. Within childhood development, children move through a range of stages and the rate of transition and the exact type of changes that occur may be unique to each child. Transition is not just temporal in the lives of children and young people, but also horizontal referring to movement across various settings that a child and his/her family may encounter within the same time frame. It also includes any changes that may affect them. These can include events such as bereavement, loss, independence, illness, changes in family structure, changes at school or friendship etc. In general then, transition can be understood as a change of contexts.

We would like this issue to focus on the role of such transitions in children and young people’s lives and particularly welcome articles with a focus on research in this area. Critiques of policy or practice in this area may also be included.

Examples of areas that could be explored include:

  • A focus on specific transitions and how they affect children
  • What children and young people say about transition in their lives
  • Giving a voice to children/young people and enabling their active participation in transition processes
  • Coping strategies that children/young people use to deal with transition
  • Stressful transitions and supports to alleviate it
  • How can we understand the meaning and role of transitions (including specific research methods)
  • The role of support structures in helping children manage transitions
  • External structures/environments and how they affect or impose transition (e.g. educational institutions, health and social services)
  • Examples of good practice in successfully managing/easing transition
  • Cultural and societal attitudes to transition (including how transitions are viewed and experienced across different cultural groups/minorities)

General Guidelines for Authors

The Children’s Research Digest invites articles for submissions from members for each thematic issue. It is a platform whereby those working in children’s research can disseminate their research findings, policy analysis or synthesis of on-going research.  The Review has an open access policy and will be distributed as a pdf to members of the network and beyond.  Submissions for each issue should address the thematic focus of the particular issue and can be written by academics, practitioners or policy makers. The Digest has an ISSN number for both its print and online issues and should be made freely available.

All papers submitted should be well written, free from errors and relevant references provided. It is very important that no plagiarism of other’s work occurs. Where an author wishes to reproduce a graph/figure/table/photo in its entirety, relevant permissions of the original author must be provided.

The Digest accepts two types of submissions:

  1. Short articles of between 1200 and 1500 words (excluding references tables/graphs) and can take the format of review pieces, short research articles or analysis of relevant policy/legislation. They should address the thematic focus of the particular issue and should be broadly based on research relating to children.


  1. Research summaries of up to 400 words can be included. These summaries may provide a link to research that has already been published elsewhere or may be based on research that is intended to be published elsewhere.

A more detailed style guide is attached.  

Reviewing Process

All articles will undergo a review process, whereby their articles will be sent to a minimum of one reviewer and generally to two reviewers. The guest and assistant editors will decide on the appropriate reviewer for each article.  The process of review will not be blind (anonymous) for the author, but discretion and confidentiality will be assured.  The reviewers may remain anonymous. Where a reviewer has a conflict of interest, this shall be declared by the reviewer to the editor or assistant editor and an alternative reviewer shall be appointed. The reviewer will be asked to provide feedback which is fair and explained clearly and this will be communicated with the author.  The final decision to publish rests with the editorial committee, having due regard to the reviewer’s comments and the author’s response to them. Articles may be:

  1. accepted in their entirety
  2. accepted subject to revisions (major or minor)
  3. declined either due to issues of quality or lack of relevance to the particular issue. A suggestion may be made to submit an article for a future issue if deemed appropriate.

Deadline for Submissions

Authors must submit their paper for consideration along with the attached submission form by 31st August 2016 to  We regret that we will not be able to accept late entries. For further information on any aspect of the submission process, please send an E-mail to the above address.