Call for papers on suicide prevention and response

Extended deadline for submissions: January 31st 2021

Intervention plans to devote a special section on suicide prevention and response in the September 2021 issue, accompanied by webinars for practitioners. It will be dedicated largely to insights into suicide prevention efforts in the Middle East, but will include contributions from other regions to share relevant lessons learned and emerging perspectives regarding suicide prevention. The proposal for the special section has been developed in collaboration with GIZ’s regional project, ‘Psychosocial Support for Syrian/Iraqi  Refugees and IDPs.’

Suicide represents a significant global challenge, with close to 800,000 deaths every year, 79% of which occur in low- and middle-income countries (WHO,
2018)1. The levels of profound despair that can lead someone to take their own life can rarely be attributed to a single cause. Conflict, forced displacement,
migration, limited access to healthcare, economic crises, unemployment, and consequences of global health emergencies such as the current COVID 19 pandemic may make personal challenges even more difficult to deal with in relation to conflicts with partners and families, or individual sources of stress.

Many Middle Eastern countries, including Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq and Palestine, are attempting to cope with decades of protracted crises, re-erupting
wars and economic hardships. The resultant ‘lethal hopelessness’ in the region has translated to rising rates of suicide and self-harm. However, as the act of
suicide is highly stigmatised – even condemned by religious authorities and criminalised in several countries – the quality of available data remains poor and
targeted prevention is rare. There is also a lack of capacity development for health providers, gatekeeper trainings and awareness-raising among communities. Against this highly challenging backdrop, stakeholders such as governmental bodies, Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) actors
and a diverse array of local and international initiatives have developed a number of services for individuals in acute crisis.

GIZ’s regional project, ‘Psychosocial Support for Syrian/Iraqi Refugees and IDPs’, and Intervention are working together in an initiative to document suicide
prevention efforts in humanitarian settings. We aim to share relevant good practices and lessons learned with practitioners and policymakers and others
and identify emerging perspectives regarding suicide prevention and response.

We would like to collect a wide range of contributions for the special section in Intervention. Intervention publishes different types of articles, including more
formal ‘academic-style’ papers presenting, for example, research findings or aspects of practice or systematic reviews; field reports featuring case studies or
evaluations of projects or training approaches; and personal reflections providing space for authors to share their thoughts on aspects of their work or experience
in the humanitarian field. For example, a personal reflection could be based on an interview between two people discussing the impact of a certain aspect of suicide prevention in the course of their work or in their lived experience.

If you are involved in any suicide prevention activities or programmes and/or have lived experience in this area, we would welcome your contributions. For this
special section, we are inviting short papers (maximum word count of 5000 words, excluding the abstract and references), field reports (maximum word
count of 4000 words) and personal reflections (maximum word count of 3000 words). Papers will be selected on criteria such as their relevance to the field, the
holistic approaches they represent, methodological rigour and level of innovation.

We particularly welcome those who may wish to publish their work for the first time and in these circumstances, we offer support in revising submitted
manuscripts for publication. The articles of the special section will be published in English and Arabic. A group of guest editors will be invited to join Wendy Ager,
editor in chief, Intervention, in reviewing the submissions.

Intervention, the Journal of Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Conflict Affected Settings, is an open access journal which is published twice a year. It is
hosted by Arq International. We publish peer-reviewed articles that are relevant to individuals working in conflict affected areas and to those working with
refugees from areas of conflict around the world. We also welcome papers on mental health and psychosocial support in settings with limited formal resources
of chronic adversity that are not directly related to war or violence, as well as papers situated within complex humanitarian emergencies. We encourage
submissions from a wide range of practitioners, researchers, academics and policymakers involved in mental health and psychosocial support.

Please submit your article to

Information for authors on preparing a manuscript is available here:

For this special section, the publishing fee will be waived.

For more information or discussion of potential ideas, please contact Wendy Ager, editor in chief, Intervention, at 

To download in Arabic please click here. 

Messages to the Authors Arabic – English

Message to the Authors – English

Message to the Authors – Spanish

Message to the Authors – French


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.