Research Publication Formats Accepted by UAR

From the Editors

Authors have asked for them, and we are pleased to provide these updated and expanded descriptions of the four research formats accepted by UAR.


Articles provide significant theoretical contributions to important questions of politics, governance, and public policy specifically as they relate to cities and/or their regions. Diverse disciplinary perspectives are encouraged, but submissions should contribute to important literatures in urban politics, institutions, and policies relevant to the research questions. Comparative empirical research is especially welcome, as are submissions from diverse methodological perspectives. Manuscripts submitted as articles should not exceed 12,000 words.

UAR does not publish special issues, but does publish sets of articles as symposia or colloquies. Symposia are sets of 3-5 articles providing greater depth on an important topic of broad interest among urban scholars. UAR symposia generally do not include an introductory article, and each article in the proposed set is assessed independently of the others and as such must provide a sufficient contribution on its own to merit publication. Colloquies are sets of articles featuring an exchange of perspectives about an important topic. Colloquies are typically comprised of an initial essay, followed by 3-5 shorter essays engaging the initial essay, and ending with a short response from the author(s) of the initial essay. Colloquies can be developed around a highly influential book or differing perspectives on an important issue. Proposals for symposia and colloquies should be sent to Jered Carr at

Research Note

Research notes serve one of two functions. First, it provides a validation of, an addendum to, an extension of, or a refutation of a single point or concept that is established in previous research or significant policy debates. The conclusion and/or discussion section(s) must be sufficiently developed to highlight the importance of the findings and make clear how they should affect future research. Second, it provides a targeted call to other researchers, such as to introduce a new idea or to suggest a new methodology. Both types of research note require only minimal and narrowly targeted reference to the body of research, and no exploration of a broader literature – just enough to point readers to the established research that the note addresses or takes as its point of departure. Manuscripts submitted as research notes should not exceed 6,000 words.

Research Synthesis

Research syntheses serve several different purposes, including critically assessing a body of theory or empirical research, articulating what is known about a phenomenon and ways to advance research about it, and identifying influential variables and effect sizes associated with an existing body of empirical research. The research synthesis should include a systematic and reproducible search strategy and articulate clear criteria for inclusion of studies in the analysis. Meta-analyses that statistically combine studies to determine an overall effect or effect size of one variable on another are welcome, as are research syntheses that do not use formal meta-analytic methods. Manuscripts submitted as research syntheses should not exceed 12,000 words.

Book Review Essay

Book review essays are short scholarly pieces that compare and contrast the contributions of the multiple books (or selected portions of the books) under review. These essays identify key themes or critical issues across the set of books, position key contributions within larger bodies of literature, and assess the impact of each book to understanding the overarching topic or topic areas. Book review essays are not a compilation of multiple book reviews. Their purpose is not to provide a thorough content description and book review essays need not consider each of the subject books completely or equally. Manuscripts submitted as book review essays should not exceed 6,000 words. Proposals for book review essays should be sent to Jered Carr at

UAR publishes reviews of individual books on the Urban Affairs Forum.

Photo by Thomas Lefebvre on Unsplash

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