The Edward Ginsberg Center for Community Service and Learning

Since 1994, the Ginsberg Center has published the Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning (MJCSL), which is widely recognized as a leader in the field of community engaged scholarship. 

  • Current and past issues of the journal are available online
  • We have compiled a bibliography of often-cited articles from the journal that have significantly influenced community engagement in higher education. 
  • We invite you to explore other leading journals in the field, as well, to inform your community-engaged teaching and research.  

Goals of the Journal

  • Widen the community of civic engagement educators, engaged scholars, and their community partners, to expand the number of people who have a chance to experience the rich benefits that accrue to engaged scholarship participants.
  • Encourage research and pedagogical scholarship in civic engagement, campus-community partnerships, and engaged/public scholarship.
  • Honor and develop the intellectual vigor of students, staff, faculty, and community partners.
  • Contribute to the growth of civic engagement, and engaged/public scholarship in service to developing our country’s capacity to build a civic temper that inspires collective action to expand access and opportunity to political, economic and social power.

Ongoing Call for Submissions

We seek lively and original writing on community and civic engagement that embraces a scholarly voice with an expansive community perspective. We encourage work that translates research and scholarly writing for multiple audiences, allowing university and community stakeholders to engage fully in the discovery, dissemination and application of ideas. We publish research about community engagement from a variety of disciplines and invite interdisciplinary scholarship.

We seek writing that probes hard questions and that balances theoretical or conceptual ideas with a sharp focus on the messy, complicated details of shared experience, of real places, of people and politics. We value submissions that are both rigorous and accessible.

The MJCSL is looking for scholarship that tells stories of how and why we engage with communities outside of our own, and our aspiration is to appeal to both scholars and educated “lay” readers such as university students, policy professionals, activists, and anyone who’s interested in the complex and interconnected ways we engage one another.

We welcome contributions from academics, journalists, community partners, and anyone else who engages in research about community engagement and writes incisively with an engaging style. We're looking for insightful analyses. We welcome intellectual risk takers.

Fall 2019 Special Section Call for Submissions

The Fall 2019 issue of the Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning (MJCSL) will feature a special section on Community Impacts of Engaged Research, Teaching and Practice, guest edited by Charles Z. Levkoe (Lakehead University), Karen Schwartz (Carleton University), Peter Andrée (Carleton University) and Nadine Changfoot (Trent University).


Community-campus engagement (CCE) has become a powerful tool for teaching and research on university and college campuses around the world. Community-based organizations have also recognized the value of partnering with faculty, students, and campus staff as a way to increase capacity, broaden reach, and accomplish goals. Acknowledging the opportunities and challenges of partnership-based work, researchers and community-based practitioners have called for ‘community-first’ approaches that focus on generating meaningful impacts for community-based partners through collaboration (Andrée et al., 2014; Butcher et al., 2011; Cronley et al. 2015; Ward & Wolf-Wendel, 2000). This call was inspired by the Community First: Impacts of Community Engagement (CFICE) research project based at Carleton University in Ottawa ( CFICE, a partnership among academics and community groups across Canada established in 2012, is a collaborative action research project that aims to better understand the ways that community-campus partnerships can be designed and implemented to maximize the value for communities and community-based organizations.


For this special section, we seek research, pedagogy, and other articles that explore community first approaches to community-engaged research, teaching, and practice work, and how they can have greater community impact. We especially welcome articles that include and/or incorporate the perspectives and voices of non-academic partners. The editors invite abstracts for articles and rigorous case studies from academics, educators, and researchers that: (a) report research studies focused on community outcomes/impacts, (b) report on, comment on, and/or imagine a variety of ways of defining and measuring community impacts and valuation of CCE; (c) propose new approaches to research, teaching, and practice (in relation to historical and contemporary models, methods,processes, and ethos) intended to share power, resources, and control in CCE partnerships; (d) offer critical insights into the role of CCE and social movements as well as community-based (e.g., ‘collective impact’) processes; (e) provide perspectives on CCE cases that offer guidance to student, faculty, administrative staff, and community partners; or (f) explore innovative university, community, and funder policies and frameworks designed to encourage impactful CCE research, teaching, and practice.

We are particularly interested in contributions that build on the foundations of social justice and ecological sustainability and bring creativity, imagination, and experimentation. Articles should also be rooted in embodied, experiential modes of making, thinking, learning, and doing; oriented toward current and future cultural and social conditions; and concerned with ways that these can be integrated into developing modes of research, teaching, and practice.

The first step in the submission process is to submit a one-page abstract/précis by December 20, 2018 that adequately conveys the focus/plan for the article and includes the author(s)’ contact information, including email address. Invitations to submit an article will be made by email in early January, with invited articles due March 25, 2019. Reviewing recent past issues of the MJCSL to see the kinds of articles published in this journal will better position the prospective article submitter to receive a favorable reply to their abstract submission.

Please consult general MJCSL submission guidelines.

Submissions and questions about the special issue may be directed to Charles Z. Levkoe ( and Nadine Changfoot (

Charles Z. Levkoe
Canada Research Chair in Sustainable Food Systems
Assistant Professor, Health Sciences
Lakehead University


Nadine Changfoot
Associate Professor, Department of Political Studies
Trent University


Karen Schwartz
Associate Professor
Interim Associate Vice President (Research and International)
Carleton University


Peter Andrée
Associate Professor and Associate Chair
Department of Political Science
Carleton University



  • Andrée, P., Chapman, D., Hawkins, L., Kneen, C., Muehlberger, C., Nelson, C., et al. (2014). Building effective relationships for community-engaged scholarship in Canadian Food Studies. Canadian Food Studies / La Revue Canadienne Des Études Sur L'alimentation, 1(1), 27-27.
  • Butcher, J., Bezzina, M., & Moran, W. (2011). Transformational partnerships: A new agenda for higher education. Innovative Higher Education, 36(1), 29-40.
  • Cronley, C., Madden, E., & Davis, J.B. (2015). Making service-learning partnerships work: Listening and responding to community partners. Journal of Community Practice, 23(2), 274-289.
  • Ward, K., & Wolf-Wendel, L. (2000). Community-centered service learning: Moving from doing for to doing with. American Behavioral Scientist, 43(5), 767-780.

Manuscript Submission & Review Process

We have made both our Proposal Submission and Peer Review processes transparent to exemplify the principles of our field.  

Please note that the MJCSL does not read unsolicited manuscripts. The editorial team will review your proposal to determine interest in pursuing it. If so, you will be invited to submit a full manuscript according to the proposal submission guidelines.

The MJCSL uses an innovative peer review process designed to increase collaboration amongst scholars in the field that deepens the learning opportunity for both peer reviewers and authors.

*Updated June 1, 2018


Proposal Reviews

While we accept proposals at any time,  we have two proposal review periods per year. Applicants can expect to hear back within 30 days from the start of each proposal review period.

  • For Fall Issues, the review period begins March 1st 
  • For Spring Issues, the review period begins September 1st

Manuscript Reviews

If you are asked to submit a manuscript, the deadlines are: 

  • For Fall Issues: June 1st
  • For Spring Issues:  December 1st

Our aim is to complete the external review process and issue a decision within three months of the original date of full manuscript submission. Accepted manuscripts will be edited and published within one year, depending on the number and type of manuscripts in progress.

*Updated July 13, 2018

Contact Us

For any questions you may have, please contact us at