The aim of this book is to exemplify the ways in which social work and research develop in ‘advanced’ welfare states – countries where public spending is relatively high as a proportion of GNP. While such countries have traditionally been associated with Scandinavian countries in particular, and North-Western Europe more generally, there are other countries where the public spend on welfare is relatively high.

The various contributors in this book explore and exemplify ways in which social work and research are distinctive for advanced welfare states. This involves exploring their connection to professional identities, histories and welfare systems; their associations with academic, theoretical and cultural traditions of collaboration between academic and social work practice, and the distinctive links with community, national policy, governmentality and agency, with respect to forms of knowledge, discourses and conception of social problems.

Written by contributors who have experience of living and working in Belgium, Denmark, Ireland, Italy, Singapore and the UK, this book speaks throughout about problems, methods, systems and ideas in language that is readily transferable and transcends national boundaries of thought and social work practice. It will be read and understood by social work students across Europe.

chapter |16 pages


Understanding social work and research in advanced welfare states
ByIan Shaw, Kjeld Høgsbro

part I|58 pages

Advanced welfare states

chapter 2|16 pages

Social work and research in contexts of superdiversity

ByDirk Geldof, Kristel Driessens

chapter 3|14 pages

Beyond flexicurity

The shift towards work-first and its implications for street-level work in the Danish employment system
ByHenning Jørgensen, Kelvin Baadsgaard, Mads Peter Klindt

part II|68 pages

Directions in social work research in advanced welfare states

chapter 6|14 pages

Driving forces in practice research

ByMaja Lundemark Andersen, Kirsten Henriksen, Kirsten Mejlvig, Lars Uggerhøj

chapter 7|13 pages

The materiality and materials of social work

On socio-material theories and social work research
ByRasmus Hoffmann Birk

chapter 9|12 pages

Disagreement as reparative critique in the development of social work practice

ByMerete Monrad, Martin Grünfeld

part III|69 pages

Directions in social work practice in advanced welfare states

chapter 11|16 pages

Proactive, ambivalent and defensive relations between social work and social policy

The shaping of productivity
ByMia Arp Fallov, Maria Appel Nissen, Jens Kjærulff, Pia Ringø, Rasmus Hoffmann Birk

chapter 12|10 pages

Vulnerable children and young people

An enduring challenge in the Danish welfare state
ByBetina Jacobsen, Erik Laursen, Karin Kildedal

chapter 14|14 pages

The body in social pedagogical work

ByMie Engen