Call for Applications: Editor of the Social Policy Report

SRCD welcomes applications for single Editor, two Co-Editors, or an Editor with several assistants. The application deadline is June 17, 2022. 

The Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD) invites applications for the 2022 – 2026 editorship of the Social Policy Report (SPR). As one of SRCD’s hallmark policy publications, the SPR serves as a critical source of scientific knowledge about human development and its application to policy. The SPR is distributed to the membership of SRCD (about 5,000 researchers) and to approximately 300 policy and science organizations, federal agency officials, foundations, and policy journalists. A two-page summary brief may also be produced for circulation to Congress and executive branch policymakers at federal and state levels.

The SPR Publication

The SPR is published quarterly and consists of a single article presenting research findings of relevance to policy issues, events, and/or decisions. Each SPR article is approximately 35 - 50 double-spaced pages, typically summarizing scientific data from one or more studies. Articles may include commentaries from researchers, policy experts, or other relevant perspectives. Each article should clearly highlight the relevance and implications of the research findings for policy. The articles must also be written so that they will be understandable by, and relevant to, policy audiences who do not have research expertise. The scientific merit and its application to policy are key aspects of its review, with each article undergoing a peer review process by subject matter experts

The Editor Role

Editors of SPR occupy a prominent leadership position in the field. They make vitally important contributions to bridging developmental research and policy and ensuring that SPR represents the highest standards of integrity and scholarly inquiry.  Editors are responsible for implementing a strong editorial vision, naming editorial boards, selecting reviewers for manuscripts and author commentaries, and making final publication decisions (among other duties).

Given SRCD’s strong commitment to advance the developmental sciences and promote the use of research to improve human lives (see SRCD’s mission and vision), the search committee is especially interested in candidates’ unique editorial visions, with particular focus on: (1) how they would increase the policy relevance of manuscripts through the editorial process, (2) how they would encourage robust SPR submissions from a variety of policy-relevant research areas, and (3) how they would incorporate diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) approaches into the editorial process.

The new Editor will assume the title of Incoming Editor on October 1, 2022, and will assume the Editor role on November 1, 2022. The new Editor’s name and corresponding title will appear on the masthead of the first published issue after each of these dates, respectively. The new Editor will begin to receive manuscripts on November 1, 2022.

Important Deadlines and Timeline of Selection Process

The application deadline is June 17, 2022. Applications will be reviewed in July and interviews conducted in August. The Editor appointment announcement will be made in September, 2022. See below for application instructions and additional information about the position.

Application Instructions

SRCD welcomes applications for single Editor, two Co-Editors, or an Editor with several assistants.

Application Package: Applicants must submit the following materials by June 17, 2022, for consideration:

  1. Cover Letter – A letter summarizing the candidate’s interest in the position and how their experience has prepared them for the position (1 to 1.5 pages) 
  2. Vision Statement – A statement outlining the candidate’s vision for SPR, which should include novel directions, plans, and/or projections for the publication. The statement should also clearly indicate how the Editor would: (1) increase policy relevance of a manuscript through the editorial process, (2) encourage robust SPR submissions from a variety of policy-relevant research areas, and (3) incorporate diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) approaches into the editorial process (up to 3 pages)
  3. Co-editor Roles – If a co-editorship or assistant editorship is proposed, the candidates should include a description of how the work will be managed.
  4. Curriculum vitae(s) – a CV with the inclusion of policy-relevant training or experience clearly highlighted. If more than a single editor is applying, CVs for all applicants (co-editor, etc.) must be included.
  5.  References – Names and contact information for three people who can serve as references in support of the applicant/nominee.

Applications should be submitted to with the “Attn: SPR Editor Application” in the subject line.

Selection Criteria

In selecting the next SPR Editor(s), the strength of each candidate’s application materials in the following areas will be considered. If multiple Editors are proposed, their combined strength will be evaluated on these criteria.

  1. Research profile (e.g., record of publishing manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals; research expertise in a policy or policy-relevant domain)  
  2. Editorial experience (e.g., serving as reviewer and/or editorial roles; coordination of subject matter expert review processes for other peer-reviewed publications, grants, or activities)  
  3. Project management experience (e.g., active coordination of people and processes to achieve final deliverables by specified deadlines, effectively utilize diverse subject matter expertise to produce a high-quality products that will support the vision of SPR)     
  4. Policy knowledge and translation experience (e.g., knowledge of policymaking processes; training and/or experience related to the translation of research to policy at federal, state, and/or local levels)   
  5. Innovative vision for SPR (e.g., novel direction, plans, and/or projections for the publication, along with clearly articulated ideas for (1) increasing policy relevance, (2) encouraging robust SPR submissions, and (3) incorporating DEI approaches.

Requirements of the Position

The Editor(s) must agree to the following requirements of the position:

Editor Support

Editor will receive the following supports:

  • Annual stipend of $5,000 from SRCD
  • Access to the online editorial platform (ScholarOne) to support the manuscript submission and review process
  • Administrative support from our publisher, Wiley, to manage the post acceptance process (i.e., publication processes).
  • Interface with SRCD’s Communications, Policy, and Science Teams support the publication’s dissemination to target audiences. 

The Editor may also draw upon the subject matter expertise of SRCD policy staff to support the operationalization of their vision during their tenure. For instance, the Editor may seek collaborative meetings with the Director for Policy to explore how to maximize the publication’s relevance to policy audiences or request policy staff to serve as “Developmental Editors” to review draft content and provide feedback on how to strengthen the translation of research into policy.