Home » 2014 ANNUAL MEETING » Call for Papers

Call for Papers

ABSTRACT STATUS NOTIFICATIONS: All submitted abstracts/session proposals are currently under review. Please note that abstract status notifications will be sent early March 2014. If you have any questions, please contact Jennifer Lewis at jenniferlewis@preventionresearch.org.

Society for Prevention Research 22nd Annual Meeting

Comprehensive and Coordinated Prevention Systems:

Building Partnerships and Transcending Boundaries

May 27-30, 2014 │ Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill │ Washington, DC

Pre-Conference Workshops May 27, 2014



The SPR Call for Papers abstract submission deadline has been extended for FEDERAL GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES from Wednesday, October 30, 2013 to Wednesday, November 13, 2013. All NON-federal government employees are still expected to submit their abstracts by Wednesday, October 30, 2013.

Call for Papers Overview

The Society for Prevention Research (SPR) is dedicated to promoting health and well-being, and the SPR annual meeting provides an opportunity for scientists, practitioners, advocates, administrators, and policy makers to exchange ideas and discuss strategies to achieve this goal.

This year’s conference theme, “Comprehensive and Coordinated Prevention Systems: Building Partnerships and Transcending Boundaries,” offers the opportunity to respond to recommendations put forth in the National Prevention Strategy as well as other large-scale national and international efforts to improve public health. Although the number of evidence-based policies, programs and practices intended to promote health and prevent disease has been steadily growing over the last few decades, achieving a significant impact on health and well-being across communities and nations requires more widespread dissemination of these strategies. Furthermore, comprehensive service provision is necessary, such that varied strategies will be implemented which target for change multiple risk and protective factors experienced by individuals across all levels of need (e.g., universal, selective, and indicated prevention services) and at all stages of development (i.e., the prenatal period through adulthood). The coordination of such interventions requires communication, collaboration, and resource-sharing among scientists, policy makers, and practitioners that transcends systems, disciplines, and ways of thinking about prevention within and across nations. Many such partnerships already exist, but building and sustaining even more extensive networks will help increase the dissemination of comprehensive prevention services that can address multiple, related outcomes of interest to diverse stakeholders.

The SPR Program Committee invites submissions for the conference that fit within this broad theme as well as the related special themes described below. We will also consider proposals that focus on the core areas of interest to SPR, the general themes including research related to epidemiology and etiology, development and testing of interventions, implementation and dissemination strategies, innovative methods and statistics, and systems science perspectives (see below). Submissions are encouraged from researchers and policy makers at all stages of their career and from varied backgrounds including public health, education, human services, criminal justice, medical and bio-behavioral sciences, developmental science, social science, and genetics.

Special Conference Themes

Each year SPR selects special themes designed to highlight specific areas of research relevant for prevention scientists. These special themes guide the development of plenary sessions, symposia, and preconference workshops.


Large-scale dissemination of prevention policies, programs, and practices. “Translational research” has begun to investigate the processes and practices that can foster more widespread dissemination of effective prevention strategies. Proposals that highlight such efforts are encouraged, including how strategies have been successfully embedded into existing systems (e.g., public health, medicine, criminal justice) and how to ensure long-term sustainability of effective prevention strategies. We also seek proposals describing methods for building strong partnerships between scientists and practitioners and/or policy makers, including how to balance competing needs and requirements, ensuring trust and respect, and fostering effective communication across groups. Research that identifies other challenges encountered in translational research and potential solutions to these challenges is also appropriate. Examples include but are not limited to: how to access and utilize data to assess local prevention needs; innovative funding strategies; assessing the relative ability of policies, programs, and practices to reach large audiences; addressing the competing priorities of attaining high implementation fidelity while allowing for cultural sensitivity and appropriate local adaptations and accommodations; and innovate strategies for evaluating translation research initiatives, including systems science approaches.

Prevention and promotion efforts focused on early childhood. Early childhood (age 0-8) is a critical stage of development that has important implications for health and well-being across the life-course. Much research has indicated that adversities experienced during this time (e.g., individual vulnerabilities; residence in high-risk, low-income neighborhoods; or exposure to violence in the home or community) can have an immediate negative impact on children and families and long-term consequences that may emerge at various periods throughout the life-course. At the same time, promotive and protective factors encountered during this developmental stage (e.g., access to high-quality education; nurturing families; or support from other positive adults in the community) are also important in fostering well-being and resiliency throughout life. These two bodies of evidence emphasize the need for diverse prevention and promotion efforts targeting young children, their families, and communities. Proposals are encouraged which discuss the coordination and integration of promotion and the full range of prevention approaches across contexts, systems, and agencies that interact with these populations and the communities where they live, how to ensure that promotion and prevention oriented approaches are provided at the appropriate level, and methods for reaching children and families along a continuum of need.

HIV/AIDS prevention. The incidence and prevalence of HIV/AIDS globally remains unacceptably high particularly among high-risk populations (e.g., men who have sex with men, transgender persons, minorities, youth, people who use drugs) despite many scientific breakthroughs in how to prevent and treat this disease. There is a need to develop new interventions which take advantage of changing technology, biomedical as well as behavioral modalities, and the social/developmental context of HIV risk. Submissions are encouraged which describe the design, implementation, and evaluation of interventions that take advantage of these new technologies and/or directions. Proposals may also seek to increase the understanding of how HIV and co-occurring problems reflect “syndemic” processes, wherein multiple, overlapping patterns of risk and protective factors may affect the acquisition of HIV and co-occurring problems such as substance abuse, psychiatric disorder, or infectious disease. Research describing service provision to others affected by HIV/AIDS (e.g., children and family members), projects describing cross-cultural and cross-national research, and evaluations relying on advanced data analysis strategies such as social network analysis approaches are also encouraged.

General Conference Themes: Advances across the Stages of the Prevention Research Cycle

Epidemiology and Etiology: Submissions focused on describing the distribution and patterns of disease (e.g., cancer, cardiovascular disease, depression, and HIV/AIDS) as well as on identifying risk and protective targets of preventive interventions, especially those with a developmental and/or lifespan approach, or that include neurobiological, genetic, or contextual factors, are consistent with this theme.

Development and Testing of Interventions: Prior to wide scale dissemination and implementation, prevention interventions should be tested for efficacy under conditions of high quality assurance and strong research designs (“proof of concept”), and tested for effectiveness under real world conditions in settings and systems. Submissions reporting the findings from efficacy or effectiveness trials (including pilot studies) are welcomed, and those that combine the findings of such trials with one of the special conference themes are particularly encouraged.

Dissemination and Implementation Science: Dissemination, implementation, and operations bridge the gaps between research and everyday practice through a dynamic, transactional process between the public health community and researchers. Submissions under this theme should advance the scientific understanding of: dissemination, adoption, fidelity and adaptation, cost-effectiveness, integration of evidence-based preventive interventions into practice, and sustainability of preventive interventions into systems. Presentations that identify outcomes at the individual, provider, organizational, and/or system levels are encouraged.

Research, Policy and Practice: Submissions should focus on how and under what conditions research can influence policy and practice, how policy priorities shape research priorities, and the impact of policies (e.g., smoke-free policies, minimum drinking age laws) on health and behavior.

Innovative Methods and Statistics: “Cutting edge” studies and methodological analyses that address measurement, statistical and design challenges to prevention science, including cost-benefit analyses, are invited. Presentations should highlight the challenges related to prevention science that these innovative statistical methods can address and additional benefits gained by using these techniques.

Systems Science Perspectives: Explorations of the use of systems science approaches (e.g., computational modeling and simulation, network analysis, and engineering control methods) to conceptualize prevention at the micro- or macro-levels of analyses is encouraged, along with approaches that consider systems over time. For more information on how “systems science” is defined, please visit the following website: http://obssr.od.nih.gov/scientific_areas/methodology/systems_science/index.aspx.

NIDA International SPR Poster Session

The National Institute on Drug Abuse is sponsoring an international poster session. Posters will highlight drug abuse prevention and/or drug-related HIV prevention research completed in international settings by international, domestic, and cross-nation teams of researchers. A separate call for submissions to this international poster session will be issued.

All abstracts must be submitted online at www.preventionresearch.org.
The abstract submission site will open Friday, September 13, 2013.

The SPR Call for Papers abstract submission deadline has been extended for FEDERAL GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES from Wednesday, October 30, 2013 to Wednesday, November 13, 2013. All NON-federal government employees are still expected to submit their abstracts by Wednesday, October 30, 2013.


Please contact Jennifer Lewis for questions regarding online abstract submission, the peer review process, or other details regarding the Annual Meeting at 703-934-4850, ext. 213 or