Submit a Manuscript to the Journal

Qualitative Research in Psychology

For a Special Issue on

Developing and Applying Qualitative Approaches in Psychology to Explore Economic Inequality

Manuscript deadline
26 April 2024

Cover image - Qualitative Research in Psychology

Special Issue Editor(s)

Philippa Carr, University of the West of England
[email protected]

Simon Goodman, De Montfort University
[email protected]

Adam Jowett, Coventry University
[email protected]

Jackie Abell, Coventry University
[email protected]

Mirko Demasi, Leeds Beckett University
[email protected]

Submit an ArticleVisit JournalArticles

Developing and Applying Qualitative Approaches in Psychology to Explore Economic Inequality

The current global cost of living crisis, where rises in inflation outstrips any increase in income, is exacerbating the challenges of living in an unequal environment. Economic inequality is a global issue that has a negative impact on a range of social issues and people’s wellbeing (Wilkinson & Pickett, 2018). While this has been viewed as a social problem that is the reserve of sociology and public policy (Stenner & Taylor, 2008), qualitative psychologists situated within psychology are exploring economic inequality in their work. For example, critical feminist psychologists have challenged economic inequality and the presentation of poverty in the media as a form of entertainment, using discursive approaches (Carr, 2023). Most notably, less affluent people are often presented as a ‘problem’ (Rickett, 2020) and their cognitions and actions are pathologized as requiring change (Day, 2020). In contrast, extremely wealthy people are constructed as aspirational and deserving of their privilege by politicians and in entertainment documentaries (Carr et al., 2021). A qualitative methodology acknowledges the social context and everyday social interactions in the construction of inequality in society (Day et al., 2014). Economic inequality and class-based inequalities are difficult concepts to define as they embrace a multitude of identities, positions, and claims. However, qualitative approaches provide an opportunity to explore how economic inequality is understood by social actors, and the discrimination, marginalisation and prejudice that can occur as a result.

Submission Instructions

The aim of this special issue of Qualitative Research in psychology is to demonstrate how qualitative research methods can be used to advance our understanding of economic inequality. The current cost of living crisis, hot on the heels of a global pandemic, has widened economic inequality within and across communities. The current situation highlights the need for qualitative psychology to identify, expose, understand, create and/or contribute to innovative solutions. We invite submissions that explore economic inequality from a range of qualitative methodologies relevant to psychology and/or address methodological challenges of addressing it. Within our definition of qualitative methods, we include visual, creative arts-based and post-qualitative approaches. We particularly encourage inventive ideas that embrace qualitative methodologies to address economic inequality.

Suggested topics include:

  • Taxation and wealth distribution
  • Intersectional explorations of wealth inequality
  • Media constructions of welfare benefits and their recipients
  • Arguments about Universal Basic Income
  • Role of discourse in maintaining economic inequality
  • Understanding economic concepts such as inflation
  • Lived experiences of class-based and economic inequality
  • Perceptions of the cost-of-living crisis and recessions
  • Discourse about consumption, taste, and the coding of class


Informal discussion of potential manuscripts is encouraged, and queries should be sent to Philippa Carr, [email protected] Papers that are initially selected will be subject to the standard Qualitative Research in Psychology peer-review process. Please familiarise yourself with the journal's instructions for authors prior to submission.

  • Initial Selection: 24th May 2024
  • Response from reviewers: 26th July 2024
  • Final decisions: 27th September 2024
  • Expected online publication: Early 2025

Instructions for AuthorsSubmit an Article