Deadline Extended! CALL FOR PAPERS and OTHER WORKS | Spring 2016 Journal | Trans* Rights: the Time is Now


DEADLINE EXTENDED: November 13, 2015

Spring 2016 Journal Theme – Trans* Rights: The Time is Now

Trans* activists, academics, and allies are invited to submit proposals to the LGBTQ Policy Journal at the Harvard Kennedy School Spring 2016 print journal. The journal seeks to investigate current policy issues and debates regarding trans* rights, advocacy, and representation. In the 2015 print edition, the LGBTQ Policy Journal was proud to include four articles about trans* issues. As the LGBTQ Policy Journal’s first themed edition, the 2016 print edition endeavors to highlight and center new research and policy innovations regarding some of the most marginalized within the LGBTQ community.


Submissions may take the form of research, reviews, interviews or dialogues, recounting or retelling of advocacy surrounding policy change, and/or art and personal expression.


The editorial board brainstormed gaps and questions that we have organized by general theme. This is meant to be a non-exhaustive list of potential topics that will spark interest and encourage a wide range of submissions:

  • Violence and Crime: Transgender individuals, in particular trans* people with intersecting identities of racial or ethnic minority status and/or low socioeconomic status, remain disproportionately targeted for violence. How are governments and communities tackling this problem? How are organizations and activists responding to the phenomenon of “walking while trans*” and other examples of the criminalization of trans* lives? How are prisons, jails, and detention facilities handling trans* inmates—does specified housing for trans* and/or gender non-conforming individuals reduce sexual assault and violence, or does it increase stigma and marginalization?
  • Health care: What current obstacles exist in access to healthcare for trans* individuals? What policy remedies can address health disparities, and what evidence do we have about their effectiveness?
  • Employment, housing, and public accommodation: Given high levels of poverty, unemployment, and under-employment, what polices are needed to increase the economic security of trans* people? What are examples of programs at the municipal, local, or national level that are doing an exceptionally good job at including gender identity and expression? How have non-discrimination laws and policies translated in practice for the protection of trans* individuals? How are individuals living without legally recognized gender affected by the provision of social services? What new laws, policies, or approaches may be needed to ensure nondiscrimination and accessibility for people with non-binary gender identities in the workplace and public accommodations?
  • Education: To what extent are trans* students represented at colleges and universities, and are they safe and supported there? What is needed to increase access to higher education for trans* people, in particular trans* women of color? How are single gender schools handling applications from trans* or gender-non-conforming students? What are effective strategies to discuss gender identity and expression in compulsory education?
  • Family: What are current policy challenges for adolescent gender identity affirmation and transitioning? What role does family acceptance play in the long-term outcomes of trans* youth? What strategies are needed to reduce the overrepresentation of trans* youth in the foster care system? What issues remain for the formation of trans* families, especially as more trans* children come out at younger ages and more trans* people start families of their own? What does marriage equality mean for trans* people?
  • Popular culture: How is high-profile visibility for transwomen, from Laverne Cox to Caitlyn Jenner to Janet Mock, shaping public discourse and policy debates about trans* issues? Are trans* men equally visible, and why or why not? Has visibility for trans* individuals that meet “conventional” beauty standards or who have passing privilege impacted understandings of gender?
  • Political environment: How is the increased visibility of trans* people and passage of trans-inclusive laws impacting the political environment in the United States or around the globe? Is it generating anti-LGBTQ backlash?
  • International advocacy:  How are states promoting trans* issues in foreign policy? How are multilateral institutions, development agencies, and other international stakeholders integrating (or not) trans* issues into their work?
  • Global and local movements: In what ways has/is trans* activism challenged/challenging the “LGBT” umbrella? How has the global movement for “LGBT” rights contradicted or challenged local norms and representations of gender diversity, and what has this meant for local movement? What strategies are organizations and bilaterals undertaking to ensure inclusion of intersex and trans* issues in their work? What constituents have been mobilized, what types of coalitions formed, and what type of policy advocacy has precipitated positive change for recognition of gender diversity?



The LGBTQ Policy Journal at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government is a student-run, nonpartisan publication dedicated to featuring papers and works exploring the policies, politics, trends, and issues that impact lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans*, and queer (LGBTQ) communities and individuals. The LGBTQ Policy Journal is a vehicle to inform the decisions of policy makers, thought leaders, and organizations around the world.



The application consists of two parts: submission of a web form and submission via email of a work sample.

  1. Web Form: click here to access the web form. Note that you will need to prepare the following information:
  • A summary of your argument or topic (1500 characters or less)
  • A description of sources or research you plan to utilize in your work (1000 characters or less)
  • A description of any work you have completed on the topic thus far, if any (1000 characters or less)
  • An estimated word count or size of artwork


  1. Writing Sample: Please email a writing sample (no more than five pages) or sample works to (published or presented articles/works are preferable, but not required)


The LGBTQ Policy Journal receives more submissions than we can include in our print journal. The editorial team will select work for publication based on timeliness, relevance, originality, style, depth, and cohesiveness with other pieces. If a submission is not chosen for the final publication, we may ask contributors to submit content to be featured online.



Authors will be notified in mid- to late-November regarding the status of their proposal. If selected, the first draft is due January 10, 2016; then authors will be required to participate in time-intensive editing and rewriting during the rest of January and early February in coordination with our editors. Please note publication parameters:

  • Commentaries can be as short as 500 words, and research articles up to 6,000 words.
  • Work must be original and not published in the same form elsewhere.
  • Authors are required to cooperate with editing and fact checking and to comply with Journal deadlines.



The LGBTQ Policy Journal will select papers for publication based on the following criteria:

  • Relevance of the topic to LGBTQ policy issues and timeliness with current policy debates
  • Originality of the ideas and depth of the proposed research
  • Sophistication and style of argument(s)
  • Contribution to scholarship and policy-making on LGBTQ issues


Please direct questions and inquiries to

PDF Version of this Text:  LGBTQ Policy Journal 2016 Call for Papers and Works_final

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