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International Social Welfare: Organizations and Activities  

Doreen Elliott

The major international governmental and nongovernmental organizations and their activities are discussed with reference to their global co-coordinating, advocacy, service, and research functions. Attention is also given to the work of international professional associations.



Peter De Jong

Social work interviews are purposeful conversations between practitioners and clients, involving verbal and nonverbal communication. The basic skills are regularly used by social workers and reflect the field's major practice principles and the model of change employed by the practitioner. Competency-based forms of interviewing such as motivational and solution-focused interviewing are increasingly being used in direct and indirect practice. Additional research is needed on the outcomes of specific interviewing skills and how they are learned and transferred into practice.


Congressional Social Work Caucus  

Charles E. Lewis Jr.

The Congressional Social Work Caucus is a bicameral authorized Congressional Member Organization (CMO) founded by former Congressman Edolphus “Ed” Towns in November 2010 during the 110th Congress. The mission of the caucus is to provide a platform in Congress that will allow social workers and allies to engage the federal government. The Social Work Caucus consists of members of the House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate who are professional social workers or who generally support the ideals, principles, and policies germane to the social work profession. Because of House Ethics rules, CMOs are prohibited from possessing resources of their own and must depend on the office budgets of their members. Consequently, the Social Work Caucus has participated in a number of congressional briefings and seminars in conjunction with other social work organizations such as the National Association of Social Workers, the Council on Social Work Education, and the Society for Social Work and Research. These public events covered a wide range of topics such as social workers’ roles in the Affordable Care Act, military social work, funding for mental health research, and trauma-based practice in child welfare.


Oral History and Social Work  

Arlene Bowers Andrews

This article reviews basic skills for conducting and using oral histories, summarizes ethical issues, presents examples relevant to social work, and suggests useful resources. For social workers, oral history can be a way to record the history of social change as well as a means of promoting social change. Oral history can honor, inform, raise consciousness, and motivate action. Oral histories are particularly relevant for historically excluded populations and those with oral traditions. Generating the history requires a thorough awareness of the narrator, the story, and the role of the listener as well as skillful interviewing, use of digital technology, and appropriate archiving.


Buell, Bradley  

Jean K. Quam

Bradley Buell (1893–1976) was a community organizer and planner, whose work partially facilitated the development of the American Association of Social Workers. He organized community research projects nationwide, founding Community Research Associates, and wrote extensively on community planning.


Hoey, Jane M.  

Larraine M. Edwards

Jane M. Hoey (1892–1968) helped to establish and enforce standards in public welfare administration. She was the director of social research for the National Tuberculosis Association and served as president of the National Conference of Social Work.


Marin, Rosa C.  

Victor L. Garcia Toro

Rosa C. Marin (1912–1989) was a prominent social worker, educator, and research consultant. From 1944 to 1974 she worked at the School of Social Work of the University of Puerto Rico and in 1967, she founded the journal Revista Humanidad.


The State of Social Work in Egypt  

Hamido A. Megahead

Although professional social work in Egypt has a 100-year history, there is a dearth of information in English about social work in Egypt and other non-Western countries. Five domains of social work in Egypt are (1) the international flow of Western social work practice into Egypt, (2) modern social work, (3) social work research and social work interventions, (4) social work education, and (5) fields of practice. These five domains that inform modern social work in Egypt were produced from international flows of Western social work practice into Egypt. It was also produced from social work research and social work intervention. Modern social work also comes from teaching bachelor of social work students professional social work courses. Social work knowledge was adapted, authenticated, and indigenized to meet local context. These five dominated themes have been detailed and explained. International flows of Western social work practice into Egypt include transmission (transplantation), authentication, and indigenization. Modern social work in Egypt includes social work practice and social welfare policy. Social work research has included explanatory, descriptive and experiment social work research studies. Social work intervention has included social work intervention of aiming at solving problems and stressors and social work intervention of aiming at applying resources for change. Fields of social work practice includes family and child Social Work and school social work. Social work education is focused only on Bachelor of Science in Social Work covering the professional social work courses group work practice, social casework practice, community organization, social welfare planning, policy and administration, fields of social work practice. A synthetic approach that knits together these five themes entail that modern social work has been produced from international flows of Western social work practice into Egyptian context. It is also produced from social work research and social work intervention. Modern social work also comes as results of teaching Bachelor Social Work (BSW) students the professional social work courses.


Gore, Madhav Sadashiv  

Purnima Mane and Shalini Bharat

Madhav Sadashiv Gore (1921–2010) was an acclaimed social scientist and social work educator who fostered a strong link between social work and the social sciences. He was also a distinguished academic administrator who headed some of India’s most prominent educational institutions, including the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), which he led for two decades as director (1962–1982).



Charles D. Garvin and Maeda J. Galinsky

This overview highlights the current status of group practice, examines the conceptual frameworks for working with groups, reviews the status of group work practice research, and identifies challenges for practice. The discussion examines how the numerous frameworks in social work with groups are joined by adherence to a systemic perspective, an understanding of group dynamics, common intervention concepts, and processes important to phases of intervention. While group work writings and practice have always emphasized the importance of opposing injustices, recent literature has taken a strong position on how group work theory and practice are related to the pursuit of social justice. Although recent studies on social group work are characterized by increasing attention to design, data collection, and analysis, research is still at a developing stage. The discussion of challenges points to areas that are of special importance in current and future practice, including diversity in composition, a commitment to attaining social justice, changing membership, involuntary membership, new professional roles, and use of technology.


Complex Systems Science and Social Work  

John Halloran and Fred Wulczyn

Extending social work’s familiarity with the metaphorical use of systems concepts, formal systems science enables macro social workers pathways of understanding and description of system-level behavior. Systems, in a formal sense, are coherently organized and interconnected sets of parts that, when operating together, perform a function. The behaviors of complex systems are not reducible to the behavior of individual components, and behaviors of systems are unique to the system as a whole. We introduce a formal approach to systems thinking, provide an overview of central concepts in complex systems analysis, and conclude with an in-depth example of an agent-based simulation model, which puts complex systems thinking into action in a research and practice context.


Schizophrenia Spectrum and Other Psychotic Disorders  

Concepcion Barrio, Mercedes Hernandez, Paula Helu Fernandez, and Judith A. DeBonis

Social workers in health and mental health and across public and private health sectors are expected to be knowledgeable of comprehensive approaches to effectively serve individuals dealing with psychotic disorders, including family members involved in their care. Effective services require expertise in assessment, diagnostics, treatment planning, and coordination of community support services. This article provides a knowledge base for social work practitioners working with clients challenged by the experience and consequences of serious mental illness, such as schizophrenia spectrum and other psychotic disorders. We begin by reviewing the public health significance of these disorders, clinical phenomenology and its historical context, and symptoms and classification. We then discuss the family and cultural context, evidence-based treatments, and several social and clinical issues that social work practitioners should be aware of when working with this client population.


Community Needs Assessment  

Mary Ohmer and Emily Underwood

Community assessments in macro social work practice focus on identifying the needs and assets of a community that can be mobilized for community improvement and change. Macro social workers engage with residents and community members as partners in conducting and utilizing the findings from community assessments. The first section describes the values and principles underlying community assessments. This is followed by a discussion of approaches for conducting community assessments. The overall approach to community assessment discusses the shift in community assessment from focusing mainly on needs and deficits to understanding both community assets and needs. Two specific approaches to community assessment are then described in greater detail, including the consensus organizing approach to conducting a community analysis and the asset-based community development approach to conducting asset mapping. This section is following by an overview of the key methods for collecting and reporting data for a community assessment.


Wakabayashi, Tatsuo  

Yasuhiro Kuroki

A Japanese social work educator and researcher, Tatsuo Wakabayashi was one of the founders and developers of the Japanese Association of Schools of Social Work (JASSW). Wakabayashi had a broad perspective and a solid ability to see the future of the times. He contributed to the development of social work theory and research in Japan.


Health Care Social Work  

Shirley Otis-Green

Health social work is a subspecialization of social work concerned with a person's adjustment to changes in one's health and the impact this has on that person's social network. Social workers in every setting must be ready to assist individuals and families adjusting to illness and coping with medical crises. This entry provides a brief overview and history of health social work and describes the settings and roles where this work is practiced. Significant challenges and opportunities in clinical care, research, education, and policy are discussed. Standards and guidelines for quality practice are then noted.


Social Capital  

Katrina Balovlenkov

Social capital is a social science concept used within macro social work practice to describe the role of human relationships, connectivity, and networks in the planned change process. Social capital has been used to examine how marginalized populations and resource-limited communities mobilize and act to improve social conditions relying on human relationships, connectivity, and networks. Social capital, particularly as it relates to social support and collective efficacy, is linked to preventing and treating disease and addressing socioeconomic conditions that create community-level barriers to well-being. Cultivating social capital has influenced social movements in the United States to produce positive change, such as efforts to create green spaces, challenge discriminatory laws, expand access to healthy food in food deserts, preserve native lands, and enact healthcare reforms. While the definition and measurement of social capital has evolved over the years, in the broadest sense it informs macro social work by improving our understanding of how collective advocacy built on interconnectedness, reciprocity, and trust in both the quality and quantity of social relationships results in real change.


Mixed Methods Research  

Daphne C. Watkins

Mixed methods research integrates both qualitative and quantitative methods into a single study to produce a more inclusive and expansive understanding of a topic. This article defines mixed methods in social work research, and discusses design notation, language, popular mixed methods designs, and data integration. Using mixed methods provides an opportunity for social workers to take advantage of the strengths of both qualitative and quantitative approaches and to offset their weaknesses. It is important that social workers engaged in mixed methods research maximize the interpretation of their findings and articulate the advantages of using mixed methods over qualitative or quantitative methods alone. Given the unique features of the profession, it is imperative that social workers carve out a distinctive mixed methods niche for social work researchers and practitioners.


School Climate and School Social Work Practice  

Aidyn Iachini, Ruth Berkowitz, Hadass Moore, Ronald Pitner, Ron Avi Astor, and Rami Benbenishty

School climate is critical for school improvement efforts, yet questions remain regarding how best to define and measure the construct. Research demonstrates relationships between a positive school climate and important youth development and academic learning outcomes. As school climate policies continue to develop, clarification regarding the dimensions of school climate and continued research on how school climate impacts school and student outcomes remains important.


Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing  

Tonya Edmond and Karen Lawrence

Since its inception in 1987, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy has been the subject of lively debate and controversy, rigorous research both nationally and internationally, and is now used by licensed practitioners across six continents as an effective treatment of trauma symptoms and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The aim of this entry is to provide social work practitioners and researchers with a description of the treatment approach for adults and children, EMDR’s development and theoretical basis, a review of controversial issues, and an overview of the evidence of effectiveness of EMDR across trauma types and populations.



Leslie Leighninger

This entry discusses some topics in social work and social welfare history. It covers different approaches to that history, such as an emphasis on social control functions of social welfare; a stress on the “ordinary people” involved in historical events; or particular attention to the stories of women, people of color, and other groups who have often been excluded from formal sources of power. It notes the importance of using original sources in writing history, and explains the various steps involved in researching and interpreting these sources.