Journal of the International AIDS Society Special Issue

Call for Papers
Invitation for abstract submission NOW OPEN
Deadline: 15th October, 2010

This is a call for articles for a special issue of the Journal of the International AIDS
Society on the Social and Political Sciences in HIV Research.
Special Issue Editors:

Susan Kippax
Editor-in-Chief, Journal of the International AIDS Society
University of New South Wales, Australia

Martin Holt
University of New South Wales, Australia

Sam Friedman
National Development and Research Institutes, USA

HIV is a profoundly social disease, and its causes and consequences are deeply embedded in social, cultural and political processes. In December 2009, a report1 was published highlighting an increase in the importance afforded to the biomedical sciences and a concomitant tendency to neglect the social and political sciences in HIV prevention, treatment and care. This finding is a cause for concern: the social and political sciences are essential to complement and strengthen biomedical research and to identify ways forward in the global pandemic.

This special issue of Journal of the International AIDS Society will focus on the engagement of the social and political sciences within HIV research, to be published in September 2011. The editors invite both conceptual and empirical articles, which address the value of the social and political sciences in HIV research, and fruitful ways that social, political and biomedical researchers can work together to address contemporary challenges posed by HIV/AIDS (see Proposed Topics below for further details).

Submission Process
Initial contributions should be in the form of an abstract in English outlining the main arguments/findings of the proposed paper. If you are submitting a paper based on empirical research, we recommend that you follow the Journal of the International AIDS Society’s guidelines and structure the abstract using the subtitles Background, Method, Results and Conclusions. Abstracts should be no longer than 350 words. The deadline for submission of abstracts is 15th October, 2010. Abstracts should be emailed to Martin Holt ( who can answer queries about the special issue.

The abstracts will be reviewed by the editors and shortlisted for the special issue. The authors of shortlisted abstracts will be contacted and invited to prepare full-length papers of up to 5,000 words for submission to the Journal of the International AIDS Society. The deadline for submission of completed papers is 15th April, 2011. Only invited articles and submissions before the deadline will be considered. All editorial decisions regarding publication in the journal will be based on the outcome of peer review.

Proposed Topics
How can we best research the impact of medical technologies (such as HIV treatments, HIV testing, viral load testing, male circumcision, microbicides, and pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis) on sexual and/or drug injecting practices and networks in different social, economic, political and cultural settings? How do we draw on the strengths of the social and political sciences to examine the relationship between prevention and treatment?

What are the conditions for successful collaboration between social, political and biomedical researchers? How do we overcome the tensions between different paradigms? Critical discussion of successful (or failed) collaborations within HIV research (and the insights the collaborations fostered) are welcome.

The political and policy contexts on which responses to the HIV epidemic rely are often treated as separate domains from biomedical and clinical research. Contributions that demonstrate the interconnectedness of the political, the social and the biomedical and the value of working across these domains are encouraged. For example, what does «political commitment» mean, and how can it be assessed? What are the social determinants of program roll-out and scale-up?

Are there pressing issues within the global HIV pandemic where there has been a failure to integrate the insights of social, political and biomedical research? What might such integration and engagement produce? Critical reviews and commentary on specific issues are welcome, as are descriptions of transdisciplinary interventions that seem promising.

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