The Social Work History Network exists to explore the nature and growth of social work in order to inform contemporary policy and practice. Founded in 2000 in the UK, it is an informal network of social workers, historians, archivists, researchers, educators, students, and social work policy makers. The Network meets three or four times a year to discuss papers given by invited speakers. Meetings are open to all.
The Network is chaired by David N Jones and co-ordinated by Sarah Vicary. If you would like to join the Network's mailing list please contact: Stephen Martineau. The SWHN website is hosted by the NIHR Policy Research Unit in Health and Social Care Workforce: Unit researchers Carl Purcell and Stephen Martineau sit on the Steering Group of the Network. The Network is also supported by The Open University, the University of Chester, and the British Association of Social Workers.
We expect the next meeting to be around February 2024.
20 June 2023: June Thoburn & David N Jones receive lifetime achievement awards at BASW AGM (BASW news item)
6 November 2023: Social work with older people – a hidden history (Hybrid event - slides available)
29 June 2023: Peering into historical reviews of social work: Qualitative research and autobiography. (Hybrid event)
5 June 2023: Uncovering the history of social work and social welfare – challenges and sources. This was a Social Welfare History Group (US) and Social Work History Network (UK) webinar. Recording and slides are available on the event page.
The 8 March 2023 meeting of the SWHN was The Uncertain Place of ‘Community’ in Social Work, a hybrid event at King's College London. We hope to post a recording of the event.
Presentations from the October 2022 meeting, "Knowledge for Practice: Changing ideas and influences on children and family social work", held on 26 October 2022 are available on the event page.
Go to the Social Work History Network event series page to see all upcoming and recent events.
Banner photo at the top of this page: A detail from 'The Almoner of the Great Northern Hospital at work'. The Hospital and health review, 1921. Credit: Wellcome Collection.