You are here

Sage online ordering services are currently unavailable due to network disruption. We are working to restore service as soon as possible. In the meantime, our books are still available widely via retailers and online. Inspection copies can be requested direct from Vitalsource.
If you need further assistance please visit our Contact us page for further information. Thank you for your patience and we apologise for the inconvenience.
Implementation Research and Practice

Implementation Research and Practice

eISSN: 26334895 | ISSN: 26334895 | Current volume: 4 | Current issue: 1 Frequency: Yearly

Journal Highlights
Implementation Research and Practice is an international, peer-reviewed, open access, online-only journal providing rapid publication of interdisciplinary research that advances the implementation in diverse contexts of effective approaches to assess, prevent, and treat mental health, substance use, or other addictive behaviors, in the general population or among those at-risk or suffering from these disorders.

We aim to ensure the content and editorial practices of the journal embody diversity, equity, and inclusion. We posit these constructs are relevant internationally. And, that they are reflected and can be promote via the definition of problems and goals implementation research aims to address, and the people participating in, and conducting that research.

This journal is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE).

Implementation Research and Practice is featured in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).

Submission Information
Submit your manuscript today at

Please see the Submission Guidelines tab for more information on how to submit your article to the journal.

Open access article processing charge (APC) information

The APC for this journal is currently 1000 USD, discounted from the full rate of 1500 USD. This introductory rate is available for a limited time.

The article processing charge (APC) is payable when a manuscript is accepted after peer review, before it is published. The APC is subject to taxes where applicable. Please see further details here.

For any questions regarding IRP's manuscript submission guidelines, your manuscript status, or general process questions, please contact the Editorial Assistant at For scope and pre-submission inquiries, please contact the Editors at

Implementation Research and Practice is an international, peer-reviewed, open access, online-only journal providing rapid publication of interdisciplinary research that advances the implementation in diverse contexts of effective approaches to assess, prevent, and treat mental health, substance use, or other addictive behaviors, or their co-occurrence, in the general population or among those at-risk or suffering from these disorders.

The journal welcomes a wide range of research including:

  • development and testing of strategies to advance the implementation, sustainment, and scale-out of effective prevention and treatment approaches; and, to decrease the use of approaches that are untested and ineffective;
  • evaluation of the impact of innovative design, content, or delivery methods intended to optimize effective prevention and treatment approaches;
  • evaluation of the effectiveness of novel assessment, preventive or treatment approaches that includes a robust evaluation of their implementation;
  • development and evaluation of research methods to advance the science, such as innovative research design, measurement, analytic, and data and knowledge synthesis methods;
  • research on the dissemination of information about effective approaches to the detection, prevention, and treatment of mental health, substance use, and other addictive behaviors; and, of information regarding effective methods to promote their adoption and implementation;
  • systematic reviews in the field of implementation synthesizing the evidence for frameworks, measures, strategies, and outcomes, for instance.

Outside journal scope is:

  • research exclusively focused on health promotion or health behaviors in the general population without consideration of impact on mental health, substance use, or addiction;
  • research exclusively focused on the intervention (its development, efficacy, effectiveness) with no evaluation of implementation processes or outcomes
Sonja Schoenwald Oregon Social Learning Center, USA
Byron Powell Washington University in St. Louis, USA
Bianca Albers University of Zurich, Switzerland
Associate Editor
Carolyn Audet Department of Health Policy at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN, USA and the MRC/Wits Agincourt Research Unit, School of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa
Erin Finley VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System and UT Health San Antonio, USA
Kimberley Goldsmith King's College London, UK
Ties Hoomans The London School of Economics and Political Science, UK
Bo Kim VA Center for Healthcare Organization and Implementation Research, USA
Aaron Lyon University of Washington, USA
Nathalie Moise Columbia University, USA
Michael Southam-Gerow Virginia Commonwealth University, USA
Serene Yoong Deakin University, Australia
Editorial Assistant
Madison R. Walker Aging Brain Center, Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research
Editorial Board
Greg Aarons University of California, San Diego, USA
Prajakta Adsul The University of New Mexico School of Medicine, USA
Adrian Aguilera University of California, Berkeley, USA
Marc Atkins University of Illinois at Chicago, USA
Miya Barnett University of California, Santa Barbara, USA
Melanie Barwick The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada
Rinad Beidas University of Pennsylvania, USA
Niranjan Bidargaddi Flinders University, South Australia
Ross Brownson Washington University in St. Louis, USA
Alicia Bunger Ohio State University, USA
Tatiana Elisa Bustos Michigan State University, USA
Leo Cabassa Washington University, St. Louis, USA
Ken Cheung Columbia University, USA
Matthew Chinman VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System, USA
Bruce Chorpita Univeristy of California, Los Angeles, USA
Linda M. Collins New York University, USA
Elizabeth Connors Yale University, USA
Brittany Cooper Washington State University, USA
Gracelyn Cruden Chestnut Health Systems-Lighthouse Institute, Oregon Group, USA
Geoff Curran University of Arkansas for Medical Science, USA
Gail Daumit Johns Hopkins University, USA
Alex Dopp RAND Corporation, USA
Shannon Dorsey University of Washington, USA
Naihua Duan Columbia University, USA
Mark Ehrhart University of Central Florida, USA
John Fortney University of Washington, USA
Michael French Miami University, USA
Carlos Gallo Northwestern, USA
Elvin H. Geng Washington University, USA
Vivian Go University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, USA
Geetha Gopalan Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College, City University of New York, USA
Jeremy Grimshaw Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, Canada
Alison Hamilton Univeristy of California, Los Angeles, VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System, USA
Henna Hasson Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
Don Hedeker University of Chicago, USA
Kimberly Hoagwood New York University Medical Center, USA
Sally Horwitz New York University, USA
Sigrid James University of Kassel, Germany
Sara Landes University of Arkansas for Medical Science, USA
Daniel B Lee Amherst H. Wilder Foundation, USA
David Mandell University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, USA
Elizabeth McGinty Johns Hopkins University, USA
Sheena McHugh University College Cork, Ireland
Heather McKay The University of British Columbia, Canada
Edward Miech Indiana University, USA
Robyn Mildon The Centre for Evidence and Implementation (CEI), Australia
Julia Moore The Center for Implementation, Canada
Joanna Moullin Curtin University, Australia
Laura Murray Johns Hopkins University, USA
Brian Mustanski Northwestern University, USA
Rhonda Nese University of Oregon, USA
Per Nilsen Linköping University, Sweden
Bohdan Nosyk Simon Fraser University, British Columbia, Canada
Oladunni Oluwoye Elson S Floyd College of Medicine, Washington State University, USA
John Ovretveit Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
Julie Sarno Owens Ohio University, USA
Sapana Patel Columbia University, USA
Sheila V. Patel RTI International, USA
Rogerio Pinto University of Michigan, USA
Enola Proctor Washington University in St. Louis, USA
Jonathan Purtle Drexel University, USA
Andrew Quanbeck University of Wisconsin, USA
Lisa Saldana Oregon Social Learning Center, USA
Lisa Sanetti University of Connecticut, USA
Stephen Schueller University of California, Irvine, USA
Kelli Scott Brown University, USA
JD Smith Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, USA
Ulrica von Thiele Schwarz Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
Nathaniel Williams Boise State University, USA
Shannon Wiltsey Stirman VA National Center for PTSD, Stanford University, School of Medicine, USA
Luke Wolfenden University of Newcastle, Australia
Co-Founding Editors
Cara Lewis Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute, University of Washington, USA
Sonja Schoenwald Oregon Social Learning Center, USA
  • Clarivate Analytics: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI)
  • Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)
  • PubMed Central (PMC)
  • Scopus
  • Manuscript Submission Guidelines: Implementation Research and Practice

    This Journal recommends that authors follow the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals formulated by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE).

    Please read the guidelines below then visit the journal’s submission site to upload your manuscript. Please note that manuscripts not conforming to these guidelines may be returned. Authors must include all the information, statements and documents required or manuscripts will be returned. Remember you can log in to the submission site at any time to check on the progress of your paper through the peer review process.

    Only manuscripts of sufficient quality that meet the aims and scope of Implementation Research and Practice will be reviewed. As part of the submission process you will be required to warrant that you are submitting your original work, that you have the rights in the work, that you are submitting the work for first publication in the Journal and that it is not being considered for publication elsewhere and has not already been published elsewhere, and that you have obtained and can supply all necessary permissions for the reproduction of any copyright works not owned by you.

    Implementation Research and Practice may accept submissions of papers that have been posted on pre-print servers; please alert the Editorial Office when submitting (contact details are at the end of these guidelines) and include the DOI for the preprint in the designated field in the manuscript submission system. Authors should not post an updated version of their paper on the preprint server while it is being peer reviewed for possible publication in the journal. If the article is accepted for publication, the author may re-use their work according to the journal's author archiving policy.

    If your paper is accepted, you must include a link on your preprint to the final version of your paper.        

    If you have any questions about publishing with Sage, please visit the Sage Journal Solutions Portal

    This journal is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE).

    Table of Contents:

    1. Open Access
    2. Article Processing Charge (APC)
    3. What Do We Publish
      3.1 Aims and Scope
      3.2 Article Types
      3.3 Abstract
      3.4 Plain Language Summaries
      3.5 Keywords
      3.6 Writing Your Paper
    4. Editorial Policies
      4.1 Peer Review Policy
      4.2 Authorship
      4.3 Acknowledgements
      4.4 Funding and Declaration of conflicting interests
      4.5 Research ethics and patient consent
      4.6 Language Guidelines
      4.7 Clinical Trials
      4.8 Reporting Guidelines
      4.9 Research Data
    5. Publishing Policies
      5.1 Publication Ethics
      5.2 Contributor’s Publishing Agreement
    6. Preparing Your Manuscript
      6.1 Formatting
      6.2 Artwork, figures and other graphics
      6.3 Supplemental material
      6.4 Manuscript Style and Reference Style
      6.5 English language editing services
    7. Submitting Your Manuscript
      7.1 How to submit your manuscript
      7.2 Title, keywords and abstracts
      7.3 ORCID
      7.4 Information required for completing your submission
      7.5 Permissions
    8. On acceptance and publication
      8.1 Sage Production
      8.2 Online Publication
      8.3 Promoting your article
    9. Further Information
    10. Appealing the publication decision


    1. Open Access

    Implementation Research and Practice is an open access, peer-reviewed journal. Each article accepted by peer review is made freely available online immediately upon publication, is published under a Creative Commons license and will be hosted online in perpetuity. Publication costs of the journal are covered by the collection of article processing charges which are paid by the funder, institution or author of each manuscript upon acceptance. There is no charge for submitting a paper to the journal.

    For general information on open access at Sage please visit the Open Access page or view our Open Access FAQs.

    Back to top

    2. Article Processing Charge (APC)

    If, after peer review, your manuscript is accepted for publication, a one-time article processing charge (APC) is payable. This APC covers the cost of publication and ensures that your article will be freely available online in perpetuity under a Creative Commons license.

    The APC for this journal is currently 1000 USD, discounted from the full rate of 1500 USD. This introductory rate is available for a limited time.

    The article processing charge (APC) is payable when a manuscript is accepted after peer review, before it is published. The APC is subject to taxes where applicable. Tax-exempt status can be indicated by providing appropriate registration numbers when payment is requested. Please see further details here.

    Back to top

    3. What Do We Publish

    3.1 Aims and Scope

    Before submitting your manuscript to Implementation Research and Practice, please ensure you have read the Aims & Scope.

    You will be asked to explain how your submission fits within the scope of the journal in your cover letter.

    3.2 Article Types

    We will publish original quantitative, qualitative, and mixed-methods research, presentations on innovative methodologies, reviews, and short reports. The majority of the journal content will include empirical studies. The journal will also publish conceptual papers that present a novel theoretical model, as well as viewpoints provided that the manuscript offers an engaging perspective not available elsewhere in the literature. Because widely accepted research methods are still emerging within the field of implementation science, we will be particularly interested in descriptions of novel research designs (new approaches to data collection), methodologies for measurement of key implementation constructs, and analytic approaches for implementation-relevant data. We welcome manuscripts that describe and evaluate the effectiveness of implementation strategies, particularly fully powered trials. We encourage manuscripts that place emphasis on contributing to identifying mechanisms of change for such strategies. The latter may include tests of existing theories, frameworks, or elements of either. We also encourage publication of community-driven practical implementation evaluations, authored or coauthored by implementation practitioners (i.e., agency directors, funders, and policy makers) or intermediaries (i.e., purveyors, trainers, facilitators, or consultants), and describing planned and systematic organizational or practice change, provided that these evaluations adhere to established case study methodologies and contribute to the science of implementation.

    Please find all the above details on what each article type should cover, downloadable here.

    Research: Research articles should report original primary research.  We strongly encourage that all datasets (particularly quantitative) on which the conclusions of the paper rely be available to readers. Datasets should either be deposited in publicly available repositories (where available and appropriate) or presented in the main manuscript or additional supporting files. Empirical research must report methods and results of rigorous evaluations of implementation efforts, and document full details of intervention strategies, contexts, methods and findings. Maximum 5500 words, excluding references, tables, and figures.

    Methodology: To continuously advance the field of implementation research, new methods are needed. Methodology-based manuscripts should present innovative or enhanced research methods. Research methods may include data collection approaches, experimental or observational study methods, computational methods, statistical tests or data analysis approaches.  Methodology manuscripts should clearly describe how the method adds value to the field. For example, how the method is able to address a unique (set of) scientific aim(s) related to implementation, or how the method is able to address a unique (set of) challenge(s) within the complex context in which implementation strategies are conducted. Methods should be articulated with a concrete example or case study. If there are competing methods, the article must describe improvements over existing methods. Maximum 5500 words, excluding references, tables, and figures.

    Review: Reviews provide comprehensive and authoritative coverage of a topic area and may engage one of many rigorous approaches (e.g., scoping, narrative, systematic, realist, comprehensive).  The key aims of reviews are to provide rigorous and substantial coverage of mature subjects, evaluations of progress in specified areas, and/or critical assessments of emerging implementation strategies. Maximum 5500 words, excluding references, tables, and figures.

    Short Report: Short reports are an optimal article type for compelling findings of studies that might have been limited methodologically, discrete/focused findings that do not require significant discussion, and research that incrementally extends previously published work. Rapid evidence reviews will also be acceptable as a short report, provided rigorous and systematic methodologies are employed and carefully described. Maximum 2500 words, excluding references, tables, and figures.

    Conceptual Paper: Conceptual articles have a goal of developing models, theories, or frameworks and/or foundations of implementation strategies, for instance. These articles typically engage in careful review to base theories on extant literature and empirical work. Conceptual papers should not be conflated with a debate or position paper, which our journal is not accepting at this time as they are better suited for the viewpoint articles. Maximum 5500 words, excluding references, tables, and figures.

    Viewpoint: Short, focused articles of contemporary interest are welcomed. The viewpoint article is more editorial in nature and covers an aspect of an issue that is relevant to the journal's scope. Examples of viewpoints could be a discussion of the impact of new technology on implementation, or a discussion of changes in policy and their effect on implementation research, a debated perspective on a key issue, or a call to action for the field to shift directions or focus. Viewpoints may sometimes be commissioned, but unsolicited manuscripts are welcomed. Viewpoint articles should have no more than 2 tables or figures, 3 authors and 10 or under references. 1500 words, excluding references, tables, and figures.

    Practical Implementation Report: A Practical Implementation Report is a report summarizing a community-driven implementation, conducted by an implementation practitioner (i.e., agency directors, funders, and policy makers) or intermediary (i.e., purveyors, trainers, facilitators, or consultants), and describing systematic organizational or practice change, provided that these descriptions contribute to the science of implementation. Practical Implementation Reports should clearly describe the implementation strategy (or strategies) were used to enact this change. When evaluation of the implementation is described, the methods and results of the evaluation must be clear and should be consistent with quality standards for evaluations. If they are not, this should be noted as a limitation. Practical Implementation Reports must include a future directions section within the discussion intended to guide the development of new methodologies, measures, or research questions. Maximum 5500 words. 

    Please ensure the word count is listed on the title page. This word count should be indicative of the manuscript text only and not include abstract, tables, figures, or references.

    3.3 Abstract

    Implementation Research and Practice will ask authors to provide a structured abstract of up to 300 words.

    This should be structured as follows (with flexibility as needed titrated to manuscript type)               

    • Background
    • Methods
    • Results
    • Conclusions

    3.4 Plain Language Summaries

    A plain language summary (PLS) must be provided for all article types that require an abstract. The plain language title (approx. 50 words) and plain language summary (approx. 300 words) should describe the article using non-technical language, making it accessible to a wider network of readers. More information and guidance on how to write a PLS can be found on our Author Gateway.

    The PLS publishes directly below the scientific abstract and are open access making it available online for anyone to read. Peer review of the PLS will be conducted following our PLS reviewer guidelines. When submitting, authors should enter their plain language title and plain language summary into the box provided in the submission system. The PLS does not need to be provided in the manuscript text or as a separate file. Manuscripts without a PLS, or a PLS which is a direct copy of the scientific abstract, will be returned. If the article type does not require an abstract and therefore does not require a PLS please enter “N/A” in each box.

    If you need professional help writing your Plain Language Summary, please visit our Author Services portal.

    3.5 Keywords

    You will be asked to select from a comprehensive list a minimum of 3 keywords on submission, to a maximum of 10.  You may have the option to add free form keywords if your desired keyword is not on the list. Please ensure you have checked the list before inputting free form keywords.

    3.6 Writing Your Paper

    The Sage Author Gateway has some general advice and on how to get published, plus links to further resources. Sage Author Services also offers authors a variety of ways to improve and enhance their article including English language editing, plagiarism detection, and video abstract and infographic preparation.

    3.5.1 Making your article discoverable

    For information and guidance on how to make your article more discoverable, visit our Gateway page on How to Help Readers Find Your Article Online

    Back to top

    4. Editorial Policies

    4.1 Peer Review Policy

    Following a preliminary triage to eliminate submissions unsuitable for Implementation Research and Practice all papers are sent out for review. The covering letter is important. To help the Editor in their preliminary evaluation, please indicate why you think the paper suitable for publication. 

    The journal’s policy is to have manuscripts reviewed by two expert reviewers. There may be cases where the expertise of a third reviewer is sought. Implementation Research and Practice follows a masked review policy, in which the identities of authors and reviewers are concealed from one another. All manuscripts are reviewed as rapidly as possible, while maintaining rigor. Reviewers make comments to the author and recommendations to the Editors who then makes the final decision. 

    You will also be asked to nominate peers who you do not wish to review your manuscript (opposed reviewers). 

    Please note that the Editors are not obliged to invite/ reject any recommended/opposed reviewers to assess your manuscript. Manuscripts will also be reviewed by other non-recommended reviewers.

    The Editor or members of the Editorial Board may occasionally submit their own manuscripts for possible publication in the journal. In these cases, the peer review process will be managed by alternative members of the Board and the submitting Editor / Board member will have no involvement in the decision-making process.

    Implementation Research and Practice is committed to delivering high quality, fast peer-review for your paper, and as such has partnered with Publons. Publons is a third party service that seeks to track, verify and give credit for peer review. Reviewers for Implementation Research and Practice can opt in to Publons in order to claim their reviews or have them automatically verified and added to their reviewer profile. Reviewers claiming credit for their review will be associated with the relevant journal, but the article name, reviewer’s decision and the content of their review is not published on the site. For more information visit the Publons website.

    Please note that Implementation Research and Practice has full editorial independence from SIRC.

    From 2024, the Special Collections peer review process is handled by the journal’s Editor, and is in line with the journal’s standard practise and Sage’s policies and processes. 

    The Editor maintains oversight of the Special Issue and has final say on manuscript decisions. Special Collections prior to 2024 may have had Guest Editors or may have been selected by the Editors in Chief. This will be noted on each Special Collections page. Pre 2024, where there were Guest Editors in place for a Special Collection, the peer review process was handled by the Guest Editors in the Sage Track system, with oversight and guidance of the Editors in Chief. Proposals for Special Collections can be sent to All Special Collections manuscripts should be prepared in conformity with the journal’s submission guidelines: 

    In the event of the Special Collection not reaching the required number of articles, the Special Collection may be changed to a special section or the individual papers may be published as stand-alone articles (at the discretion of the Editors in Chief).  

    4.2 Authorship

    All parties who have made a substantive contribution to the article should be listed as authors. Principal authorship, authorship order, and other publication credits should be based on the relative scientific or professional contributions of the individuals involved, regardless of their status. A student is usually listed as principal author on any multiple-authored publication that substantially derives from the student’s dissertation or thesis.

    Please note that AI chatbots, for example ChatGPT, should not be listed as authors. For more information see the policy on Use of ChatGPT and generative AI tools.

    4.3 Acknowledgements

    All contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship should be listed in an Acknowledgements section. Examples of those who might be acknowledged include a person who provided purely technical help, or a department chair who provided only general support.

    4.3.1 Third party submissions
    Where an individual who is not listed as an author submits a manuscript on behalf of the author(s), a statement must be included in the Acknowledgements section of the manuscript and in the accompanying cover letter. The statements must:

    • Disclose this type of editorial assistance – including the individual’s name, company and level of input
    • Identify any entities that paid for this assistance
    • Confirm that the listed authors have authorized the submission of their manuscript via third party and approved any statements or declarations, e.g. conflicting interests, funding, etc.

    Where appropriate, Sage reserves the right to deny consideration to manuscripts submitted by a third party rather than by the authors themselves.

    4.4 Funding and Declaration of conflicting interests

    Implementation Research and Practice requires all authors to acknowledge their funding and also to make a declaration regarding conflicting interests. Please ensure that this information is included within your submission by including it on your Title page, uploaded to the submission site containing these headings: “Funding” and “Declaration of Conflicting Interests.”

    If no funding relevant to the manuscript was received, the authors should state that:” This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial, or not-for profit sectors.”

    If there are no conflicts of interest, the authors should state, “The Author(s) declare(s) that there is no conflict of interest.” Manuscripts that do not include a statement on funding and on conflicts will be returned.

    For more information on formatting funding acknowledgements, and good practice guidelines for declaring conflicting interests please view out Publishing Policies on the Sage Journal Author Gateway.

    For further guidance on conflict of interest statements, please see the ICMJE recommendations.

    Manuscripts that do not include a statement on conflicts of interests or a declaration of conflicting interests will be returned.

    4.5 Research ethics and patient consent

    Medical research involving human subjects must be conducted according to the World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki.

    Submitted manuscripts should conform to the ICMJE Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals, and all papers reporting animal and/or human studies must state in the methods section that the relevant Ethics Committee or Institutional Review Board provided (or waived) approval. Please ensure that you have provided the full name and institution of the review committee, in addition to the approval number.

    For research articles, authors are also required to state in the methods section whether participants provided informed consent and whether the consent was written or verbal.

    Information on informed consent to report individual cases or case series should be included in the manuscript text. A statement is required regarding whether written informed consent for patient information and images to be published was provided by the patient(s) or a legally authorized representative. Please do not submit the patient’s actual written informed consent with your article, as this in itself breaches the patient’s confidentiality. The Journal requests that you confirm to us, in writing, that you have obtained written informed consent but the written consent itself should be held by the authors/investigators themselves, for example in a patient’s hospital record. The confirmatory letter may be uploaded with your submission as a separate file.

    Please also refer to the ICMJE Recommendations for the Protection of Research Participants

    Manuscripts that do not conform to the guidance above may be returned.

    4.6 Language Guidelines

    Authors must follow the Guidelines to Reduce Bias in Language of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.). These guidelines relate to level of specificity, labels, participation, gender, sexual orientation, "racial" and ethnic identity, disabilities and age. Authors should also be sensitive to issues of social class, religion and culture. The language used in your manuscript should be inclusive and language that might be deemed sexist, racist and/or discriminatory should not be used. All submissions should avoid the use of pejorative terms and insensitive or demeaning language and submissions that use unacceptable language will be returned by the editor. We ask that authors review the guidance here: APA guidelines on Bias Free Language

    4.7 Clinical trials

    Implementation Research and Practice conforms to the ICMJE requirement that clinical trials are registered in a WHO-approved public trials registry at or before the time of first patient enrolment as a condition of consideration for publication. The trial registry name and URL, and registration number must be included at the end of the abstract.

    4.8 Reporting guidelines

    Please see below for more information on which reporting standard to use. In most cases, it is acceptable to select only one reporting guideline. In some cases, more than one guideline will apply. For example, a study specifically evaluating meditators would require authors to use both the Guideline for Reporting Mediation Analyses (AGReMA) and likely other relevant reporting guidelines (e.g., CONSORT). Please see our commentary on AGReMA for more information.

    In your cover letter, please:

    • identify which standard you elected to use and why
    • provide, when no standard is used, rationale

    The relevant EQUATOR Network reporting guidelines should be followed depending on the type of study.

    All randomized controlled trials submitted for publication should follow the Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) guidelines. The manuscript should include a completed CONSORT flow chart as a cited figure in the manuscript and the completed CONSORT checklist should be uploaded with your submission under the “other” file option. Please note the CONSORT checklist will not be published online and is for Editor use only. The flowchart will be published as a figure in the final manuscript.

    In addition, prospective registration is required of randomized controlled trials (RCTs).

    Systematic reviews and meta-analyses should follow the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta Analyses (PRISMA).  Manuscripts should include the completed PRISMA flow chart as a cited figure in the manuscript, and the completed PRISMA checklist should be uploaded with your submission under the 'Other' files option. Please note the PRISMA checklist will not be published online and is for Editor use only. The flowchart will be published as a figure in the final manuscript. 

    Qualitative studies should follow the Consolidated Criteria for Reporting Qualitative Research (CORE-Q) reporting standards. Please see these guidelines for more information.

    Manuscripts presenting nonrandomized evaluations should follow the Transparent Reporting of Nonrandomized Evaluations (TR END)  standards. Please see these guidelines for further information.

    The EQUATOR wizard can help you identify the appropriate guideline.

    Other resources can be found at NLM’s Research Reporting Guidelines and Initiatives.

    Manuscripts that do not follow the above guidance or upload the required information on submission may be returned or desk rejected.

    4.9 Research Data

    The journal is committed to facilitating openness, transparency and reproducibility of research, and has the following research data sharing policy. For more information, including FAQs please visit the Sage Research Data policy pages.

    Subject to appropriate ethical and legal considerations, authors are encouraged to:

    • share your research data in a relevant public data repository
    • include a data availability statement linking to your data. If it is not possible to share your data, we encourage you to consider using the statement to explain why it cannot be shared.
    • cite this data in your research

    Back to top

    5. Publishing Policies

    5.1 Publication Ethics

    Sage is committed to upholding the integrity of the academic record. We encourage authors to refer to the Committee on Publication Ethics’ International Standards for Authors and view the Publication Ethics page on the Sage Author Gateway.

    5.1.1 Plagiarism

    Implementation Research and Practice and Sage take issues of copyright infringement, plagiarism or other breaches of best practice in publication very seriously. We seek to protect the rights of our authors and we always investigate claims of plagiarism or misuse of published articles. Equally, we seek to protect the reputation of the journal against malpractice. Submitted articles may be checked with duplication-checking software. Where an article, for example, is found to have plagiarized other work or included third-party copyright material without permission or with insufficient acknowledgement, or where the authorship of the article is contested, we reserve the right to take action including, but not limited to: publishing an erratum or corrigendum (correction); retracting the article; taking up the matter with the head of department or dean of the author's institution and/or relevant academic bodies or societies; or taking appropriate legal action.

    5.1.2 Prior publication

    If material has been previously published, it is not generally acceptable for publication in a Sage journal. However, there are certain circumstances where previously published material can be considered for publication. Please refer to the guidance on the Sage Author Gateway or if in doubt, contact the Editor at the address given below.

    5.2 Contributor’s Publishing Agreement

    Before publication Sage requires the author as the rights holder to sign a Journal Contributor’s Publishing Agreement. Implementation Research and Practice publishes manuscripts under Creative Commons licenses. The standard license for the journal is Creative Commons by Attribution Non-Commercial (CC BY-NC), which allows others to re-use the work without permission as long as the work is properly referenced and the use is non-commercial. For more information, you are advised to visit Sage's OA licenses page. Alternative license arrangements are available, for example, to meet particular funder mandates, made at the author’s request.

    Back to top

    6. Preparing your manuscript

    Please ensure that all manuscript elements conform to the APA style guide. Please see the Reference style and manuscript style section for more information.

    6.1 Formatting

    The preferred format for your manuscript is Word. LaTeX files are also accepted. Word and (La)Tex templates are available on the Manuscript Submission Guidelines page of our Author Gateway.

    6.2 Artwork, figures and other graphics

    For guidance on the preparation of illustrations, pictures and graphs in electronic format, please visit Sage’s Manuscript Submission Guidelines  

    Figures supplied in color will appear in color online.

    Please note that in accordance with APA style, figures/charts and tables should be placed at the end of the document, after the references.

    6.3 Supplemental Material

    This journal is able to host additional materials online (e.g. datasets, podcasts, videos, images etc) alongside the full-text of the article. For more information please refer to our guidelines on submitting supplemental files.

    6.4 Manuscript Style and Reference Style

    Implementation Research and Practice adheres to the APA style guidelines for all elements of manuscripts. This includes title pages, abstracts, heading levels, line spacing and paragraph indentation, tables, figures, references. For full guidance, please refer to the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th edition. Free, online access to this information is available via this website

    We also request that authors read our policy on inclusive language in Section 4.6 of these guidelines, and follow the APA bias-free language guide, available here. 

    Reference style details in particular can be found here

    If all elements of your manuscript do not conform to the APA style, it will be returned.

    6.5 English language editing services

    Authors seeking assistance with English language editing, translation, or figure and manuscript formatting to fit the journal’s specifications should consider using Sage Language Services. Visit Sage Language Services on our Journal Author Gateway for further information.

    Back to top

    7. Submitting Your Manuscript

    7.1 How to submit your manuscript

    Implementation Research and Practice is hosted on Sage Track, a web based online submission and peer review system powered by ScholarOne™ Manuscripts. Visit to login and submit your article online.

    IMPORTANT: Please check whether you already have an account in the system before trying to create a new one. If you have reviewed or authored for the journal in the past year it is likely that you will have had an account created.  For further guidance on submitting your manuscript online please visit ScholarOne Online Help.

    7.2 Title, keywords and abstracts

    Please supply a title, short title, an abstract and keywords to accompany your article. Please see section 3 for more details on keywords and abstracts.

    The title, keywords and abstract are key to ensuring readers find your article online through online search engines such as Google. Please refer to the information and guidance on how best to title your article, write your abstract and select your keywords by visiting the Sage Journal Author Gateway for guidelines on How to Help Readers Find Your Article Online.

    7.3 ORCID

    As part of our commitment to ensuring an ethical, transparent and fair peer review process Sage is a supporting member of ORCID, the Open Researcher and Contributor ID. ORCID provides a unique and persistent digital identifier that distinguishes researchers from every other researcher, even those who share the same name, and, through integration in key research workflows such as manuscript and grant submission, supports automated linkages between researchers and their professional activities, ensuring that their work is recognized.

    The collection of ORCID IDs from corresponding authors is now part of the submission process of this journal. If you already have an ORCID ID you will be asked to associate that to your submission during the online submission process. We also strongly encourage all co-authors to link their ORCID ID to their accounts in our online peer review platforms. It takes seconds to do: click the link when prompted, sign into your ORCID account and our systems are automatically updated. Your ORCID ID will become part of your accepted publication’s metadata, making your work attributable to you and only you. Your ORCID ID is published with your article so that fellow researchers reading your work can link to your ORCID profile and from there link to your other publications.

    If you do not already have an ORCID ID please follow this link to create one or visit our ORCID homepage to learn more.

    7.4 Information required for completing your submission

    Provide full contact details for the corresponding author including email, mailing address and telephone numbers. Academic affiliations are required for all co-authors. These details should be presented separately to the main text of the article to facilitate anonymous peer review.

    You will be asked to provide contact details and academic affiliations for all co-authors via the submission system and identify who is to be the corresponding author. These details must match what appears on your manuscript. At this stage please ensure you have included all the required statements and declarations and uploaded any additional supplementary files (including reporting guidelines where relevant).

    7.5 Permissions

    Please ensure that you have obtained any necessary permission from copyright holders for reproducing any illustrations, tables, figures or lengthy quotations previously published elsewhere. For further information including guidance on fair dealing for criticism and review, please see the Copyright and Permissions page on the Sage Journal Author Gateway

    Back to top

    8. On acceptance and publication

    If your paper is accepted for publication after peer review, you will first be asked to complete the contributor’s publishing agreement. Once your manuscript files have been checked for Sage Production, the corresponding author will be asked to pay the article processing charge (APC) via a payment link. Once the APC has been processed, your article will be prepared for publication and can appear online within an average of 30 days. Please note that no production work will occur on your paper until the APC has been received.

    8.1 Sage Production

    Your Sage Production Editor will keep you informed as to your article’s progress throughout the production process. Proofs will made available to the corresponding author via our editing portal Sage Edit, or by email to the corresponding author and should be returned promptly.  Authors are reminded to check their proofs carefully to confirm that all author information, including names, affiliations, sequence and contact details are correct, and that Funding and Conflict of Interest statements, if any, are accurate. 

    8.2 Online Publication

    One of the many benefits of publishing your research in an open access journal is the speed to publication. With no page count constraints, your article will be published online in a fully citable form with a DOI number as soon as it has completed the production process. At this time it will be completely free to view and download for all.

    8.3 Promoting your article

    Publication is not the end of the process! You can help disseminate your paper and ensure it is as widely read and cited as possible. The Sage Author Gateway has numerous resources to help you promote your work. Visit the Promote Your Article page on the Gateway for tips and advice.

    Back to top

    9. Further Information

    For any questions regarding IRP's manuscript submission guidelines, your manuscript status, or general process questions, please contact the Editorial Assistant at For scope and pre-submission inquiries, please contact the Editors at


    Back to top

    10. Appealing the publication decision

    Editors have very broad discretion in determining whether an article is an appropriate fit for their journal. Many manuscripts are declined with a very general statement of the rejection decision. These decisions are not eligible for formal appeal unless the author believes the decision to reject the manuscript was based on an error in the review of the article, in which case the author may appeal the decision by providing the Editor with a detailed written description of the error they believe occurred.

    If an author believes the decision regarding their manuscript was affected by a publication ethics breach, the author may contact the publisher with a detailed written description of their concern, and information supporting the concern, at  



    Back to top