Equity-oriented Positive Youth Development

Edited by:
Daniela Kruel DiGiacomo, University of Kentucky
Erica Van Steenis, University of California Irvine

A volume in the series: Adolescence and Education. Editor(s): Daniela K. DiGiacomo, University of Kentucky. Erica Van Steenis, University of California Irvine.

Call for Papers

We are looking for high quality original chapters between 5000 and 7000 words for publication in an Information Age Press book series called Adolescence and Education. This edited volume of the Information Age Publishing Adolescence and Education volume will examine the central inquiry: How do we conceptualize and approach equity-oriented positive youth development today – in theory and in practice? By positive youth development (PYD) we mean the prosocial approach that intentionally recognizes and leverages youth’s assets to organize programs, services, and supports to maximize their development. PYD can occur in afterschool programs, community organizations, families, peer relationships, and/or within interventions in schools. Recognizing that positive youth development is a both approach and a set of outcomes (Redd et al., 2020), this volume systematically explores how youth serving organizations, programs, and interventions infuse equity into their approach to and design for youth participation. This volume joins other research on PYD programs across the nation that have “[enhanced] their ability to better engage diverse communities with equity and inclusion at the fore” (Fields, 2020, p. 171).

Of note, as editors we recognize the seemingly ubiquitous use of the term equity in education research and practice today — and we are mindful that its varied conceptualization and use is in part constitutive of its lack of systemization in practice. In other words, while there is documented risk in the overuse of the term equity as simply a buzzword or catchall (e.g., Baldridge et al., in press), there is still the imperative to concretize and operationalize it into the everyday– both to improve today and for a much more equitable tomorrow. In this way, we welcome and especially invite a re-imagining and speculative orientation towards what is understood as equity-oriented positive youth development, in the spirit of what Gutie rrez et al. (2017) has called the need to “replace representation with imagination” in our educational research pursuits. We therefore seek manuscripts focused on making visible the tenets of high-quality youth programs that help us to think about how to conceptualize and design for equity and access as related to meaningful, robust, and consequential youth participation and outcomes. In line with these core commitments, chapters should also aim to include recommendations for future research, policy, and practice. This text is slated for publication in Spring 2024.

• Community based approaches to youth work practice
• Digital media and learning
• Civic engagement and civic literacy in adolescence
• Institution —> Practice partnerships in youth work settings, including but not limited to University-Community partnerships, Research-district partnerships, etc.
• Evidence-based and speculative design of non-formal learning settings such as out-of-school library, museum, arts, or youth organizing settings

Proposals should be made on one single-spaced page, and consist of your name and affiliation, email address, a tentative title, and an abstract (200-250 words). Please include an additional page with a brief biography (75-150 words). All proposals should be sent as a single Word file to Dr. Daniela DiGiacomo ( and Dr. Erica Van Steenis ( by December 31, 2022.

Authors of accepted proposals will be notified by February 1, 2023, about the status of their submission and sent chapter guidelines. Full chapters, ranging from 5,000 to 7,000 words in Times New Roman 12, double spaced text, inclusive of title, abstract, manuscript, and references, should be submitted as a Microsoft Word email attachment by July 7, 2023. Manuscripts should conform to 7th edition APA style conventions. See Author Guidelines.

Chapters should draw from the author/s own research and include case studies and reflective questions for readers to engage in and think actively about concepts and processes. Central themes should be explained in text boxes to engage the reader in the arguments presented. The end of the chapter should provide a summary of key reflections and insights on the research methodology, and recommendations for further reading may provide a wide range of current sources for further exploration and encourage readers to expand their knowledge. Note because of our commitment to publish this book by Spring 2024, we ask you to meet these deadlines. We will not be able to include manuscripts that do not meet the deadlines.

• Abstract Submissions: December 31, 2022
• Notification of invite to submit chapter: February 1, 2023
• Submission of book chapter: July 7, 2023
• Reviews of book chapter manuscripts sent to author(s): September 4, 2023
• Receipt by editors of final draft of book chapters: November 10, 2023
• Final book submitted to publisher: December 2023
• Anticipated publication: Spring 2024

Send all inquiries to Daniela DiGiacomo ( and Erica Van Steenis (