[CERRADA] Call for papers – A Special Issue of Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology

Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology (PAC) is seeking manuscript submissions for a Special Issue co-edited by Borja Martinovi?, Utrecht University, the Netherlands; Ana Figueiredo, Universidad Academia de Humanismo Cristiano, Chile; and Sabina Toru?czyk-Ruiz, University of Warsaw, Poland.

Places such as neighborhoods, towns, and countries are important to people and a psychological bond with a place can have consequences for the relations within and between groups. Environmental psychologists, sociologists and human geographers concerned with people-place relationships tend to focus on place attachment, which is a generally positive type of bond of an individual has with the place (Low & Altman, 1992; Hernández et al., 2007; Scannell & Gifford, 2010). Place attachment has been shown to generate involvement in matters that are relevant to the place in question, such as keeping the place clean or volunteering to help with organizing local activities (Toru?czyk-Ruiz & Martinovi?, 2020). Furthermore, among the majority group, particularly active place attachment – a reflective bond with the place oriented at discovering the place and wanting to show it to others (Lewicka, 2011) – gives room for the acceptance of outsiders, more so than a more traditional form of attachment, such as a taken-for-granted bonds based on rootedness (Wnuk & Oleksy, 2021).

In parallel, social and organizational psychologists (e.g., Brown et al., 2005; Brylka et al., 2015; Peck et al., 2020; Selvanathan et al., 2020), as well as anthropologists (Geschiere, 2009), are increasingly interested in another type of bond with a place, namely psychological ownership of a place. When groups of people have a sense that a place belongs to them, this is referred to as collective psychological ownership (Pierce & Jussila, 2010; Verkuyten & Martinovi?, 2017). Ownership comes with the right to decide, and many intergroup conflicts are being fought around the question of who owns a particular place. Arguments such as ‘we were here first’ or ‘we developed this land’ have been used by groups of people to claim a territory and to exclude other groups from accessing it or requesting territorial rights in different parts of the world.The Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the conflict between Serbs and Albanians over Kosovo arejust a few examples. At the same time, ownership also implies the responsibility to take care of what is ‘ours’ and can thus motivate stewardship and civic engagement (Peck et al., 2020).

Place attachment (‘we belong to this place’) and psychological ownership (‘this place belongs to us’) can thus play important and sometimes contrasting roles when it comes to intergroup conflicts (Storz et al., 2020) and societal involvement. Moreover, these two bonds with the territory are relevant in various contexts and at different geographical scales, ranging from acceptance of newcomers in one’s neighborhood to support for land restitution acts for the indigenous inhabitants in settler societies. Furthermore, research on place representations and attitudes toward different groups of place users suggests that narratives on place identity and local belonging may result in conflicts over space (DiMasso, Dixon & Pol, 2011; Dixon & Durrheim, 2000). Historical narratives and collective memory about the territory may also matter for intergroup conflict, as they may serve to (de)legitimize the current social order, and emphasize a group’s ownership of a given place (Liu & Hilton, 2005). Together, these different ines of research suggest that the material or symbolic features of physical spaces and places can include or exclude specific individuals or groups, can allow or deny opportunities for interaction with others, and can support or undermine attempts to realize the individual or collective self.

With this Special Issue we aim to bring together research on people-place bonds, narratives about place, and psychological ownership to get a broader understanding of the diverse ways that territory matters to people and may shape social relations within and across groups. We welcome contributions considering a variety of territories, ranging from regions, countries, towns, neighborhoods, to a particular local park, square, building, or office space. We are interested in contributions that focus on inter-group conflicts as well as those that consider the role of territorial bonds in shaping intra-group solidarity and motivating stewardship behaviors (e.g. pro-environmental actions, civic involvement, etc.) that benefit the communities. We are open to, and actively encourage, a plurality of theoretical and methodological approaches, including quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods. We also invite theoretical papers presenting a conceptual model or initiating a new research agenda for the study of the role of territorial bonds in group conflicts and/or solidarity.

Submission Process

By October 15, 2021, potential contributors should email a brief letter of intent that includes the following information:

1) Tentative title

2) Names of anticipated authors along with a brief bio (up to 75 words per author)

3) A brief summary of the proposed manuscript (up to 500 words): Please mention your research question, the context under study, theoretical ideas, methodological approach, and (if available) the preliminary findings.

The letter of intent can be submitted at this link to the Special Issue editors, Borja Martinovi? (, Ana Figueiredo ( and Sabina Toru?czyk-Ruiz ( Feel free to reach out if you have any questions during the preparation of the letter.

Tentative Timeline

By November 15, 2021, authors will be informed of the outcome of the initial review by the editors. A subset of authors will be invited to submit full manuscripts for additional consideration.

By June 1, 2022, potential contributors will submit completed manuscripts. Submissions will be made through PAC’s online submission portal, and manuscripts will be peer-reviewed following the journal’s usual process. As per PAC guidelines, papers should be no longer than 8,000 words (including references, but not including tables and figures); brief reports should be no longer than 1,500 words, with up to 3 tables or figures, a 150-word abstract, and up to 10 references. For other aspects in style, please consult:

We anticipate that the Special Issue will be published online in mid-to-late 2023.

Works Cited

  • Brown, G., Lawrence, T. B., & Robinson, S. L. (2005). Territoriality in organizations. The Academy of Management Review, 30(3), 577-594. doi:10.2307/20159145
  • Brylka, A., Mähönen, T. A., & Jasinskaja-Lahti, I. (2015). National identification and intergroup attitudes among members of the national majority and immigrants: Preliminary evidence for the mediational role of psychological ownership of a country. Journal of Social and Political Psychology, 3(1), 24-45. doi:10.5964/jspp.v3i1.275
  • Di Masso, A., Dixon, J., & Pol, E. (2011). On the contested nature of place: ‘Figuera’s Well’,‘The Hole of Shame’and the ideological struggle over public space in Barcelona. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 31(3), 231-244.
  • Dixon, J., & Durrheim, K. (2000). Displacing place?identity: a discursive approach to locating self and other. British Journal of Social Psychology, 39(1), 27-44.
  • Geschiere, P. (2009). The perils of belonging: Autochthony, citizenship, and exclusion in Africa
    and Europe. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
  • Hernández, B., Carmen Hidalgo, M., Salazar-Laplace, M. E., & Hess, S. (2007). Place attachment and place identity in natives and non-natives. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 27(4), 310-319. doi:10.1016/j.jenvp.2007.06.003
  • Lewicka, M. (2011). On the varieties of people’s relationships with places: Hummon’s typology
    revisited. Environment and Behavior, 43(5), 676-709.
  • Liu, J. H., Hilton, D. J. (2005). How the past weighs on the present: Social representations of history and their role in identity politics. British Journal of Social Psychology, 44(4), 537-556.
  • Low, S. M., & Altman, I. (1992). Place attachment. In Place attachment (pp. 1-12).
  • Springer, Boston, MA. Peck, J., Kirk, C. P., Luangrath, A. W., & Shu, S. B. (2020). Caring for the commons: Using psychological ownership to enhance stewardship behavior for public goods. Journal of Marketing, 002224292095208. doi:10.1177/0022242920952084
  • Pierce, J. L., & Jussila, I. (2010). Collective psychological ownership within the work and organizational context: Construct introduction and elaboration. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 31(6), 810-834. doi:10.1002/job.628
  • Scannell, L., & Gifford, R. (2010). Defining place attachment: A tripartite organizing framework. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 30(1), 1-10. doi:10.1016/j.jenvp.2009.09.006
  • Selvanathan, H. P., Lickel, B., & Jetten, J. (2020). Collective psychological ownership and the rise of reactionary counter-movements defending the status quo. British Journal of Social Psychology. doi:10.1111/bjso.12418
  • Storz, N., Martinovi?, B., Verkuyten, M., Žeželj, I., Psaltis, C., & Roccas, S. (2020). Collective psychological ownership and reconciliation in territorial conflicts. Journal of Social and Political Psychology, 8(1), 404-425. doi:10.5964/jspp.v8i1.1145
  • Toru?czyk-Ruiz, S., & Martinovi?, B. (2020). The bright and dark sides of length of residence in the neighbourhood: Consequences for local participation and openness to newcomers. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 67, 101383. doi:10.1016/j.jenvp.2019.101383
  • Verkuyten, M., & Martinovi?, B. (2017). Collective psychological ownership and intergroup relations. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 12(6), 1021-1039. doi:10.1177/1745691617706514
  • Wnuk, A., Oleksy, T. (2021). Too attached to let others in? The role of different types of place attachment in predicting intergroup attitudes in a conflict setting. Journal of Environmental Psychology, forthcoming.


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