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Policy papers

We welcome papers on any policy issue where language and linguistics research is relevant. The only condition is that the paper is based on peer-reviewed published research.

The aim of policy papers is to connect research with policy through focusing on a specific piece of research and explaining its relevance for policy. The link to policy can range from pointing out conclusions and lessons for practice through to discussion of existing policies and practices and formulation of policy recommendations. In all cases, the emphasis is on providing research evidence for criticising, endorsing or proposing a policy. 

Authors should aim at pieces of 2,000-3,000 words, writing in language accessible to non-specialists, and avoiding technical terminology. Papers should be preceded by a summary (in bullet points up to 300 words) outlining the main policy issue, the research and conclusions of the paper. A section for further reading at the end should include the main research publications on which the article is based, and any further resources for interested readers. The list should not involve exhaustive referencing of scholarly articles but rather aim to highlight approximately 5-6 key publications, preferably accessible by non-specialists.

Opinion Articles

We welcome articles (of 1000 words) by linguists and stakeholders commenting on current issues relating to language and linguistics research.


We publish dialogues between scholars representing distinct approaches and convictions regarding a research topic that is relevant for public debate. 

Submission and editorial process

Articles should be submitted to in Word. Graphs should be submitted separately in jpeg or png.

Each paper is reviewed by the Editors and members of the Editorial Board. Decisions are reached within 6 weeks of submission. Publication is expected no later than 12 weeks after submission to ensure relevant papers can contribute to current policy debates.

House Style

Languages, Society and Policy follows the MHRA style guide, using the author–date citation system. Full details of this style can be found at:

We encourage authors to consult this resource with queries, and particularly to read through the ‘Quick Guide to MHRA Style’ before submitting their articles. 

In-text citations should give the author’s or editor’s surname, date of publication and, where necessary, page numbers, as follows: (Trudgill 1983: 127–40).

An alphabetical list of cited works should be included at the end of submitted articles, following the following formats:



Trudgill, Peter. 1983. On Dialect (Oxford: Blackwell)

Cook, Vivian and Li Wei (eds). 2016. The Cambridge Handbook of Linguistic Multi-Competence (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press)

Chapter in Edited Volume

Joseph, John E. 2007. ‘842, 1871, and All That: Alsace–Lorraine and the Transformations of Linguistic Nationalism’, in The French Language and Questions of Identity, ed. by Wendy Ayres-Bennett and Mari C. Jones (London: Legenda), pp. 44–63

Journal Article

Phipps, Alison and Giovanna Fassetta. 2015. ‘A Critical Analysis of Language Policy in Scotland’, European Journal of Language Policy, 7.1: 5–27

Bernaus, Mercè, Anne-Marie Masgoret, Robert C. Gardner and Edith Reyes. 2004. ‘Motivation and Attitude Towards Learning Languages in Multicultural Classrooms’, International Journal of Multilingualism, 1.2: 75–89



European Commission. 2012. Special Eurobarometer 386: Europeans and their Languages, <> [accessed 14 November 2016]



Since the MHRA Style provides no recommendations for the citation of legislation, it is advised that authors follow the OSCOLA system (, where necessary, with an in-text citation similar to that presented above i.e. (Gaelic Language (Scotland) Act 2005, s 1(2)(d))

Download a PDF version of these Guidelines here

Editorial Guidelines

Languages, Society & Policy: a journal connecting research in linguistics and languages, cultures and societies with policy and the public.

LSP promotes the multidisciplinarity of linguistics and language research and welcomes contributions from diverse disciplines including, but not restricted to, linguistics, modern languages, cultural studies, cognitive science, developmental linguistics and psychology, sociolinguistics, corpus and computational linguistics, education, health sciences, psychology and neuroscience.

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