Call for papers – Child and Adolescent Mental Health Special Issue (2022): ‘Child and youth mental health & the global ecological crisis’

Child and Adolescent Mental Health invites manuscripts for a Special Issue entitled “Child and youth mental health & the global ecological crisis” to be edited by Dr. Bernadka Dubicka and Prof. Ann Sanson, and due for publication in February 2022.

The editors of Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CAMH) aim to publish a Special Issue on the topic of ‘Child and youth mental health & the global ecological crisis’ in 2022 and are now inviting proposals from prospective authors. Children and young people (CYP) the world over have been mobilised by the call to action by Greta Thunberg on climate change and the ecological crisis. This is the most pressing issue of their time and also for the global population. The term ‘eco-anxiety’ has been coined to describe the heightened worry, sense of powerlessness and even despair that many CYP feel regarding this crisis. Globally, CYP also have to live with the direct consequences of climate change and ecological disasters, ranging from flooding, fires, hurricanes, pollution, loss of land and biodiversity, together with their indirect consequences such as the forced displacement, economic hardship and resource scarcities. There are some connections between the climate crisis and the current COVID-19 pandemic: e.g. climate change has increased the probability of transmission of viruses from animals to humans; while the pandemic has taken some attention away from the climate crisis, it has provided an example of the sort of emergency action at a global scale that is needed to address it; and the post-pandemic recovery phase presents a unique opportunity for shifting to a net-zero society to prevent worse climate change and environmental destruction. In this technological age, CYP are informed and exposed to media coverage of these issues as never before, and are also able to mobilise and take direct action due to increased connectivity with their peers. We are only just beginning to explore how these issues affect CYP’s mental health, not only adversely, but also potentially building their resilience through empowering them to act.

The Special Issue invites submissions on the following topics but additional relevant contributions are welcome: effects on the mental health of children and young people from direct climate impacts (e.g. extreme weather events) and indirect impacts (e.g. economic, social); ecoanxiety; interventions to build resilience and self-efficacy; impacts of nature-based interventions; the impact of CYP participation and direct action on their mental health; and the effect of social media exposure about the ecological and climate crises. The journal welcomes submissions from across the globe in order to provide a worldwide perspective on these important issues.

The aim of this special issue is to bring together emerging research in this area; examples of potential papers include:

  • Systematic reviews
  • Qualitative studies
  • Studies examining the direct or indirect impact of the ecological and climate crises
  • Nature-based interventions to build resilience and improve mental health outcomes
  • Studies examining the impact of social media exposure on environmental issues

Interested authors should submit a letter of intent as a Microsoft Word document to the CAMH editorial office (Prabha.Choubina@acamh.org) with ‘CYP mental health & the global ecological crisis Special Issue’ in the subject line by 31st October 2020.

The letter should include the following: a tentative title; a brief description of the proposed submission (up to 500 words) including a clear statement of the methods and findings; a brief explanation of the unique contribution made by the proposed manuscript (under 100 words); names of envisaged co-authors; and contact information for the corresponding author.

The editors will review all letters and invite shortlisted authors to submit full manuscripts. The editors will contact all authors by no later than 16th November 2020 to inform them on whether or not they have been invited to submit a full manuscript. If you do not hear back by this date, please notify the editorial office (Prabha.Choubina@acamh.org). The submission of full manuscripts will be due by no later than 30th March 2021.

Please note that following the letters of intent, all submitted full manuscripts will be subject to the standard robust peer review process and final acceptance is not guaranteed. In some instances, some manuscripts may be accepted for publication in normal CAMH issues outside of the Special Issue.

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