Call for Papers for Special Issue of Ecopsychology on Children and Nature


Registration Deadline:

Wednesday, May 9, 2018, 5:00pm


Guest Editors
Judy Braus
North American Association for Environmental Education 

Sarah Milligan-Toffler 
Children & Nature Network

Submission due date: May 9th, 2018

The journal Ecopsychology will publish a special issue focusing on Children and Nature. The use of the term children in this title includes adolescents.

In the last decade, there has been increasing recognition of the importance of nature in children’s lives. Evidence has been emerging that shows many physical and psychological benefits for children when they interact with nature; and this area warrants further research. In addition, there is reason to believe that childhood offers a critical period when people develop deep affinities and sensibilities with nature — and when they can come to love nature. Ecopsychology can have unique contributions to this research and discourse.

This special issue is co-edited by two leaders in the field. Judy Braus is Executive Director of the North American Association of Environmental Education. Sarah Milligan-Toffler is Executive Director of the Children and Nature Network. They bring the strengths of their two organizations together in this collaboration.

This special issue is interested in both empirical and theoretical papers — and evocative essays — that address this topic of children and nature, broadly conceived. Relevant topics could include:

  • Empirical studies that investigate how nature impacts childhood health and wellbeing, learning, literacy, mental development, and/or human flourishing.
  • The role of managed landscapes, such as gardens, farms, and zoos.
  • Developing conservation stewardship values and caring about the environment, and how connection with nature impact attitudes and values toward the environment.
  • The impact of wild nature in children’s lives.
  • Mechanisms by which contact with nature and nature-rich settings affect children.
  • The role of mentors.
  • Advances in research methods to investigate the outcomes of spending time in nature.
  • Applications to clinical, educational, and other settings.

In addition, we welcome submissions in two categories. Community Commentaries report on community-based research. In these, we invite community partners involved in the research to provide their perspective on the research process, findings, or implications. Perspectives are articles by practitioners—including psychologists, educational administrators, environmental educators, policymakers, designers, advocates, funders, and others. In these pieces, we encourage practitioners to provide their viewpoints on the intersection of children and nature; as such, they may discuss current advances or future directions, and bring forward original data and/or personal insights.

We welcome submissions from diverse research areas including, but not limited to, psychology, landscape architecture, education, environmental education, child development, social and environmental justice, environmental studies, indigenous studies, and urban studies.

Your contribution should be no longer than 4000 words (excluding references) and submitted no later than May 9, 2018. Please submit using the journal’s online submission portal.

Please contact either guest editor Judy Braus or Sarah Milligan-Toffler.

Ecopsychology is the only peer-reviewed journal that places psychology and mental health in an ecological context to recognize the links between human health, culture, and the health of the planet. The Journal seeks to reshape modern psychology by showing that it cannot stand apart from an intimate human connection with the natural environment. We need that connection with nature to do well mentally and physically, let alone to flourish, as individuals and as a species. Against this backdrop, the Journal publishes original scientific research articles, as well as theoretical papers, case studies, nature writing, and reviews of important books and other media.

Advantages of publishing in Ecopsychology include:
•      Fast and user-friendly electronic submission
•      Rapid, high-quality peer review
•      Maximum exposure: accessible in 170 countries worldwide
•      Open Access options available

Contact Name:

Judy Braus

Contact Email: