Open call for research articles; reviews/meta-analyses; and protocols on the topic of mental health and digital technologies

Guest editor(s)


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As is well documented, the global burden of mental health is significant and growing (Vigo, Jones, Atun &; Thornicroft, 2022; Patel et al., 2018). As the technological world and its reach grows at pace, so too does its influence in mental healthcare. 

As the demand for mental health services is unlikely to be satisfied solely by face-to-face (F2F) care, and as such provision is unlikely to reach all those in need, interest continues to grow in the benefits and potential applications of digital innovations for mental health (Torous et al., 2021). As digital innovations become a more pervasive part of care provision, research into their development, reach, efficacy, implications and value grows ever more important. 

While there is potential for digital innovations for mental health to represent a new conceptualisation of psychological healthcare in light of advances in technology, such
advances necessitate (and will continue to require) appropriate scientific scrutiny, with user-involvement, to assess their suitability, acceptability, use, and ultimately efficacy (Barnes, Chandler &; Granda-Salazar, 2023; Barnes &; Prescott, 2023; Torous et al., 2019).

In response to the growth in this field, we are keen to solicit a range of work relating to digital innovations for mental health that bring to bear the broad range of challenges, debates, trends and applications. We are keen to receive submissions that span the various dimensions of empirical, ethical and practical challenges facing work in this fast-moving area of interest.

List of Research Article Types:

  • Original Research Papers 
  • Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses
  • Research Protocols

These articles are subject to double anonymous peer review by a minimum of two reviewers.

List of Topic Areas:

  • Development of digital innovations for mental health.
  • Evaluations of novel interventions for mental health.
  • Mental health apps.
  • Therapeutic games.
  • XR (VR/AR/ER) innovations.
  • Use of artificial intelligence and chatbots.
  • Social media applications to mental healthcare.
  • Online mental health support.
  • Participatory and user-centred design in digital innovations for mental health.
  • Ethical, practical and empirical issues regarding digital mental healthcare.
  • Digital treatments as outpatient services.
  • Using technology to improve quality of life. 
  • Ecological momentary assessment/intervention using digital therapeutics.
  • Digital training tools for mental healthcare professionals.
  • Dynamic networking tools/big-data.
  • Frameworks for collaborative practice in multidisciplinary projects.
  • Other areas that are relevant to this call.

We are especially keen to publish papers from marginalised groups and encourage pieces from authors within these communities who have had experiences of, or undertaken work, in the field.

Submissions information

Submissions are invited for Mental Health and Digital Technologies, a new Journal launching in 2024.

Submit your paper here!

You should consult the Journal’s author guidelines before making a submission.

If you’d like to get feedback on an article idea in advance of submission, please contact the editors:

Steven Barnes
Uniwersytet SWPS - Poland
[email protected]

Julie Prescott
University of Law - UK
[email protected]


Barnes, S., Chandler, T., & Granda-Salazar, M. (2023). Help over harm: Practical and ethical considerations for the evaluation and deployment of therapeutic games. Mental Health and Social Inclusion, 27(2), 133-139. doi: 10.1108/MHSI-11-2022-0080.
Barnes, S., Prescott, J., & Adams, J. (2023). Initial Evaluation of a Mobile Therapeutic Game for Adolescent Anxiety Disorders. Mental Health and Social Inclusion, 27(2), 118-132. doi: 10.1108/MHSI-11-2022-0076.
Patel, V., Saxena, S., Lund, C., Thornicroft, G., Baingana, F., Bolton, P., Chisholm, D., Collins, P. Y., Cooper, J. L., Eaton, J., Herrman, H., Herzallah, M. M., Huang, Y., Jordans, M. J. D., Kleinman, A., Medina-Mora, M. E., Morgan, E., Niaz, U., Omigbodun, O., Prince, M., Rahman, A., Saraceno, B., Sarkar, B. K., De Silva, M., Singh, I., Stein, D. J., Sunkel, C., & UnÜtzer, J. (2018). The Lancet Commission on global mental health and sustainable development. Lancet, 392(10157), 1553-1598. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(18)31612-X. Epub 2018 Oct 9. Erratum in: Lancet. 2018 Oct 27;392(10157):1518. PMID: 30314863.
Torous, J., Andersson, G., Bertagnoli, A., Christensen, H., Cuijpers, P., Firth, J., Haim, A., Hsin, H., Hollis, C., Lewis, S., Mohr, D. C., Pratap, A., Roux, S., Sherrill, J., & Arean, P. A. (2019). Towards a consensus around standards for smartphone apps and digital mental health. World Psychiatry, 18(1), 97-98. doi: 10.1002/wps.20592. PMID: 30600619; PMCID: PMC6313231.
Torous, J., Bucci, S., Bell, I.H., Kessing, L.V., Faurholt-Jepsen, M., Whelan, P., Carvalho, A.F., Keshavan, M., Linardon, J. & Firth, J. (2021), The growing field of digital psychiatry: current evidence and the future of apps, social media, chatbots, and virtual reality. World Psychiatry, 20, 318-335. doi: 10.1002/wps.20883.
Vigo, D., Jones, L., Atun, R., & Thornicroft, G. (2022). The true global disease burden of mental illness: still elusive. Lancet Psychiatry, 9(2), 98-100. doi: 10.1016/S2215-0366(22)00002-5. Epub 2022 Jan 10. PMID: 35026138.