Global Social Work
Practice: Reflective
Practice for Justice and
Collaborative Course: Loyola University of
Chicago School of Social Work and
Vytautas Magnus University School of
Social Work
Spring, 2009
Loyola: Professor Katherine Tyson
VMU: Professor Violeta Ivanauskiene
Group Presentation
• Imagine: You are a team of global social
workers consulting with the United Nations
• Choose a social problem anywhere in the
world and:
– describe the nature and extent of the
problem and
– what social workers could do, if they had
the funding from the UN, to remedy it
• When all the presentations are completed we
will reconsider our definitions of Global
Social Work Practice and see if we need to
revise it
The Singing Revolutions
In Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia,
The Baltic Way
Vytautas the Great
(courtesy of Wikipedia)
Church of
Vytautas the Great,
Kaunas, Lithuania
Resurrection Church
Kaunas, Lithuania
About Vytautas Magnus University
“The beginnings of higher education in Lithuania go back to the 16th century when, in 1579, the college
founded by Jesuits in Vilnius became a higher school of education, the University of Vilnius. In 1832, Czar
Nicholas I closed the university. After the independence of Lithuania was declared, in 1918, the State
Council decided to re-establish the University of Vilnius. Since Vilnius was occupied and the Lithuanian
government transferred to Kaunas, this decision was not put into effect.
In 1920, Higher Courses of Study were begun in Kaunas, laying the foundation for the establishment of a
university. In February 1922, the Lithuanian Government of Ministers decided to establish the University
of Lithuania in Kaunas. The ceremonial opening of the university took place on February 16, 1922. On
June 7, 1930, the university was named Vytautas Magnus University. It was closed during the Soviet
occupation. The act of re-establishing Vytautas Magnus University was proclaimed on April 28, 1989.”
Woodcarver at Baltica 2005
Festival, Vilnius, Lithuania
Professors Ivanauskiene and Liobikiene
Marijampole, LT
Professors Ivanauskiene and Tyson
Marijampole, LT 2005
Globalization and Social
• What is globalization? (Hare, p. 408)
• Economic
• Ecological
• Social
• Role of global social worker: Promote social
development via
• Direct services (micro and meso level)
• Participating in international policy-making or
planning organizations
• Knowledge base
• Socially-constructed: what is that?
• Theory
• Evidence-based
• Indigenous (Hare p. 415)
Human rights orientation
of this course:
• Social services that focus on:
• Facilitating healing of social and familial
• Advancing social justice within and between
• Fostering cross-cultural and transnational
understanding and cooperation
• Advancing self-determination, peace and
What are social work roles in
your country? How are they
similar and different from global
social work practice?
• Advocate
• Program developer and manager
• Practitioner with individuals, families,
• School social worker/social pedagogue
• Researcher
• Social policy planning
• Consultant and supervisor
• Educator
• More?
Characteristics of
international social work
• Consolidation of democracy
– Remedying poverty
• Global solidarity, conflict prevention,
• Transcending nation-states (20)
• Creation of solutions based on regional
needs beyond national borders (21)
• Involving new social actors to frame
common solutions
Questions about Global
Social Work (Gray and Fook)
• Definition p. 628, 630-631
• Four debates (p. 627)
– Efforts towards indigenisation of sw based on
articulating cultural practices, p. 634-5
– How distinguish local from global now? 635
– Universalizing recommendations 637-638
• SW is instrument of government?
• SW is discourse about it, or practice?
• Who dominates discourse and why?
• Value of universal standards for social work (p.
629) but how to monitor?
• Final recommendations p. 639
International Federation of
Social Workers
• “The International Federation of Social Workers recognizes
that social work originates variously from humanitarian,
religious and democratic ideals and philosophies; and that it
has universal application to meet human needs arising from
personal-societal interactions, and to develop human
potential.Professional social workers are dedicated to service
for the welfare and self-fulfillment of human beings; to the
development and disciplined use of scientific knowledge
regarding human behavior and society; to the development of
resources to meet individual, group, national and
international needs and aspirations; to the enhancement and
improvement of the quality of life of people; and to the
achievement of social justice.”
What is your opinion of this
definition of Global
Social Work?
• The social work profession promotes social
change, problem solving in human
relationships and the empowerment and
liberation of people to enhance well-being.
Utilizing theories of human behavior and
social systems, social work intervenes at the
points where people interact with their
environments. Principles of human rights and
social justice are fundamental to social work.
• By: International Federation of Social
Workers, 2000
Tackling Global Poverty
• Define poverty:
– 1) Income, 2) Human Poverty Index
• Important facts:
– Decline in poverty rate; but gap between rich and
poor countries is growing (p. 198)
– 1.3 billion out of all people in developing countries
live below the international poverty rate of $1 per
– Great income disparities within regions and
between regions
– Growth of external debt among developing
– “Commitment to education is not prominent in
many parts of the world” (198) and in some
regions has actually decreased since the 1980s
Poverty reduction (Seipel)
• An effective anti-poverty approach must have
many foundations and be sustainable (199)
• Economic growth with equity (200)
– Support micro-enterprise
– Create jobs through tax policies and legislation,
w/ training, savings, health services
• International cooperation
– Support fair trade
– Reduce unmanageable foreign debts
– Improve foreign aid
• Social investment
– Inhibit political corruption
– Develop human capital, health & equity
– Educate all people
– Facilitate solidarity among poor people to
advance their political leverage
Amartya Sen
Development as Freedom(1999)
Five distinct types of freedom, all of which focus on human choice:
– “1) political freedoms,
– 2) economic facilities,
– 3) social opportunities,
– 4) transparency guarantees, and
– 5) protective security” (1999, p. 10).
– Transparency guarantees: the need for openness that people can
expect: the freedom to deal with one another under guarantees of
disclosure and lucidity. When that trust is seriously violated, the
lives of many people – both direct parties and third parties – may
be adversely affected by the lack of openness… These guarantees
have a clear instrumental role in preventing corruption, financial
irresponsibility and underhand dealings” (1999, p. 40).
– “Protective security” citizens’ need for social, economic, and
medical safety nets, which are needed in many countries as well
as in many communities in the United States.
– Unfreedom includes the recognition that threats to human
sustenance are physically dangerous and psychologically
Amartya Sen:
Possibility of social choice
• Task: develop using systematic investigation,
broadly applicable and reasonable axioms
about important aspects of social choice
• Questions in developing social choice theory p.
• Example: how to define poverty? 194 how is
poverty shared and distributed? What is
comparative deprivation? 197
• Distinguish adaptation and ability to find
contentment in life from true social choice
Freedom and SelfDetermination
• Respecting the client’s right to self-determination is a
longstanding value of social work
• One’s chosen values, cognition, and intentions have
significant regulatory impact on subjective experience
and even on aspects of brain function
• Self-determination is a capacity in each person, hence a
standard with which to evaluate a client’s
developmental progress; it includes:
– Multicultural definitions of selfhood (Ewalt)
– Freedom with regard to aspects of life that one’s
choices can direct (Sen 1999)
– Inner freedom from drivenness by intentions
acquired to cope with traumatizing experiences -Reflective awareness of own intentions and goals and
capacity to freely choose between them
• Is the birthright of every person
• Is manifested in:
– A capacity to recognize truth in self and others
(integrity in Stephen Carter’s[1996] use of the
– A stable perception of and action to advance
justice (fair, equitable treatment of all)
– The ability to think autonomously about oneself
and one’s world (a free mind)
– The ability to advocate for fair treatment of
– Competence in one’s chosen work
– A capacity to experience the pleasures of intimacy
(romantic and caregiving intimacy)
Practice Implications of
Cultural Variations in SelfDetermination
• How directive should social worker
be (Gray & Fook, p. 636-637)?
• How individualized is the notion of
• How much freedom of choice does
the person believe s/he has in that
society? How much does s/he
actually have?
Discussion Questions
a) How does the concept of self-determination
that Patricia Ewalt describes fit with your
cultural definitions of self-determination? This
includes both the concept of self, and the
concept of freedom of choice.
b) What kinds of obstacles to self-determination
do clients you have worked with experience?
c) How do you think social workers can develop
self-determination for people 1) individually 2)
in communities 3) nationally 4) globally?
d) Amartya Sen bases his ideas on concepts of
Freedom of Choice (see slide) and he
discusses five kinds of freedom. Give
examples of those freedoms and unfreedoms
in your country.
Questions raised in the context of
post-Soviet democratization
• What is freedom? (see Jurkuviene &
Harrison; Stevenson)
– Freedom for what? Freedom from what?
• What is democracy? (consider Jane
Addams’ definition)
• How is democracy maintained?
• What is the role of civil society in
• How does social work contribute to civil
society and thereby democracy?
Developing social services in
Russia (Tempelman)
- Microethnographic study of social
workers in Russia found:
• Despite social problems accompanying
democratization and societal instability, there is
excitement about the new freedom
• With democratization and increased recognition of
social problems, there is a need for defining and
developing new forms of practice to respond to
the new context
• Importance of research to establish practice
models and define problem areas
– Current issues in social work:
• Establishing legitimacy of social work as a
• Social work education
Discussion questions
• How does your country need to
develop and improve its
• How can social workers in your
country contribute to that process?
Healey: Global Social Work
has four key dimensions
• Internationally-related domestic practice and advocacy:
– addressing problems that cross national boundaries
(e.g., trafficking, drug sales)
– Working with international populations
• Professional exchange: using knowledge gained from
other countries to improve practice and policy in home
• International Practice: Social workers contribute to
international development by working in international
development agencies – Grameen Bank example p. 11
• International policy development and advocacy: Social
work as a worldwide movement influencing policy at the
international level, as in educational efforts with UN
policy deliberations on violence against women, p. 13
• Discussion Question: What examples of these aspects
of Global Social Work have you seen?
Global social welfare
• United Nations (p. 127 ff) - aims of peace, international
amity, cooperation, and harmonizing govt actions to attain
common goals; 185 member nations
– Economic and Social Council
– High Commission for Refugees
– UN Fund for Population Activities
World Bank: provides loans to encourage development activities
International Monetary fund: provides technical assistance to
countries on financial matters (banking, taxation, etc.) (p. 135)
USAID (138): foreign aid program
Peace corps
NGO: relief and development, advocacy, development education,
exchange, agencies engaged in global sw, agencies with branches
in many countries
Efforts to articulate global human rights
and global professional ethics:
The articulation of a view of universal
values regarding human life:
– The United Nations Universal Declaration of
Human Rights at:
• Example of universal professional code
of ethics:
– The International Federation of Social
Workers Statement on Ethics at:
Global Social Work Values
• What is the debate about between
universalism in values and cultural relativism
of values? (Healey p. 152)
• Do you have examples of how a clash of
values relevant for social work is evident in
cross-cultural human rights concerns?
– In your example, who participates in the
formation of the cultural values and who
benefits from maintaining them?
– In your example, how might value clashes
be reframed so people can benefit from the
dynamic (e.g. changing) aspect of cultural
Global Professional Ethics
(Pettifor, 2004)
• Professional codes of ethics (p. 264):
– “promote optimal behavior by providing
aspirational principles”
– “regulate professional behavior by monitoring and
disciplinary action” - eg protect people from the
misuse of professional power
– Promote ethical thinking rather than rule-following
– Consolidate professional identity
• Discussion questions:
– What kinds of ethical conflicts are problematic for
social workers in your country?
– Have there been examples of the misuse of social
workers’ professional power in your country that
concern you?
Discussion questions about
developing professional ethical
• If professional codes of ethics are
transplanted from one culture to another:
– Can the values and standards fit with the
values and standards of the country to
which they are transplanted?
– Can the values and the standards be
consistent with actual practice?
• “A basic level of safety, open communication,
democratic institutions, and human rights
may be essential for professional ethical
thinking” (p. 270 Pettifor). Do you agree?
Why or why not?
Working for reconciliation in the
context of massive societal trauma:
The example of Rwanda
(discussion of Pham et al., 2004)
• Define precisely the nature of the trauma
Rwandan people experienced due to the
• What social efforts were made to generate
reconciliation and how effective were they?
– Judicial
– Legislative
• What associations did the authors find
between PTSD symptoms and attitudes
towards social justice and reconciliation?
• Why would PTSD symptoms make it difficult
for people to feel comfortable working with
Working for reconciliation in the context of
massive societal trauma:
The example of Rwanda (Pham et al., 2004)
Rwanda used three judicial processes to rectify effects of the 1994
– the ICTR,
– Rwandan national trials, and
– gacaca trials.
People responded most positively to gacaca: they felt more informed
and involved with the process (p. 610). “When people feel as thought they
have more control of the outcome, they are more likely to support the process. Since gacaca is
community-based and trials are held publicly within the community, people may be more involved
and committed” (2004, p. 610).
The least positive response was toward ICTR, about which
Rwandans had the least information. Therefore, “a lack of reliable
information is the key factor undermining the capacity of the tribunal to contribute to
reconciliation in Rwanda” (p. 610)
Individuals within the community respond more positively when
feeling involved in the justice process.
Discussion questions
• What examples do you see in your
country of PTSD that results from
societal or ethnic-level violence?
• What are aspects of global social
workers roles to assist with this
Sex, violence, and economic
restructuring in Kuwait
• What kind of economic restructuring is currently
occurring in Kuwait?
– Depressed oil prices force internal economic redistribution
among social groups; can intensity ethnic rivalry (237238)
• What is the role of gender in such a context?
– “gender violence incorporated as an element of discourse
between antagonistic ethnic groups” (238)
– “conflicts over ‘women’s proper place’ mask struggles by
some groups to retain control and power.” (239)
• “Shutting women up in their houses …leaves more jobs
for men” (251)– describe how this process has occurred
in Kuwait
Stigma and access to care
(discussion of Castro & Farmer, 2005)
• How are stigma and discrimination at the
heart of the AIDS pandemic?
• Define structural violence.
• What did the authors find about why stigma is
so hard to eradicate?
• How does treatment spark a ‘virtuous social
cycle’? (p. 56)
• If you apply these ideas to clinical social work
treatment, how would clinical social work
treatment spark a ‘virtuous social cycle’?
Developing culturally sound
definitions of well-being and
mental health
(discussion of Wong & Tsang, 2004)
• What are some examples of Western misunderstandings of
Asian cultures and values?
• What is ‘essentialization,’ why is it problematic, and what
alternatives are there? (p. 457)
• Can you think of other examples of essentialization?
• How might essentialization interfere with forming a good
social work alliance?
• What are the key dimensions of mental health according to
the Asian women?
– Spirituality
– Social conditions and access to opportunities
– Autonomy and self-confidence
• Thinking about these definitions of mental health, how would
you define mental health?
Discussion of “The origins
of cultural cognition”
• What is the pivotal and quintessentially
human capability?
• Define: intention; skills of cultural
• How do children learn to read the
intentions of others?
• What do the authors mean by their
statement, “language is not basic, it is
derived” (27) and why is this
Discussion of: Cooperation
and competition in peaceful
• How does the researcher define a peaceful society and
what are some examples?
• What does the researcher conclude about the link
between competition and aggression by examining
peaceful societies?
• What are some hallmarks of child rearing in peaceful
• What are some rituals that foster cooperation?
• Do you believe that competition fosters aggression and
• How can you as a social worker promote peace in your
country? Globally?
Discussion questions for:
Child-rearing and the development
of behavioral inhibition
in China and Canada
• How is behavioral inhibition defined and
measured in this research? Why is it an
important concept for child development?
• What statistical associations did the
researchers find between the mothers’
attitudes and the children’s behavioral
• Do you agree with the researchers’
conclusions that cultural values are expressed
by the mothers express and influence their
Mother and child, China
Canadian children
Discussion of Aggression in
Russian Children
• How do the researchers define and measure
aggression and ‘relational aggression’?
• How are parenting styles and marital
interactions defined and measured in this
• How can parents minimize dysfunctional forms
of aggression in their children? Does this vary
by country and culture?
• Gender differences in relational aggression
often are noted in the US but not in this
Russian sample. How do the researchers
explain this and do you agree?
Russian Children
QuickTime™ and a
TIFF (Uncompressed) decompressor
are needed to see this picture.
Effects of Political Violence on
Palestinian Children’s Behavior
– Context
• prior to 1987 Intifada (Palestinian uprising
against Israeli occupation of West Bank and
Gaza Strip) 39% of Palestinian children had lost
a family member, 85% had witnessed politicalmotivated violence
• 50-63,000 children were injured in first 2 years
of Intifada; 18,000 men arrested and
separated from their children
• Secret police had posed as researchers and
journalists so intermediaries had to be used to
conduct interviews
– Research questions (p. 35): What is the impact of
living in a war zone in the context of other
developmental risk factors?
Effects of political violence on
Palestinian children, cont.
Hypothesis: Repeated exposure to violence multiplies the
risk of children developing PTSD (with behavior
problems, numbing, dissociation, etc.)
Sample: 150 children, 6-9 and 12-15, boys and girls, in
low-violence and high-violence communities, all in 2
parent households
Measures: * demographics; mothers completed
Achenbach Child Behavior Inventory; children were
interviewed about their experiences of violence; Conflict
Tactics Scale given to mother re father, and child re
mother; Parenting Stress Index completed by mother
*Risk factors counted: see p. 37
Results: *Palestinian children had same incidence of
behavior problems as US children exposed to chronic
*Accumulation of risk evident: see p. 39 chart; as risks
went over 4 children went over threshold into clinical
Effects of political violence on
Palestinian children (cont).
• Results (cont):
– Gender, age, and community context did not multiply risk;
but in context of high risk, boys and younger children
showed more risk (p. 39).
– Children are much more resilient to community violence in
a context of functional families
• Theoretical context and conclusions:
– Independence, responsibility, and an absence of
overprotection are associated with resiliency for girls while
structure, rules, parental supervision and male role model
are associated with resiliency for boys
– Trauma is associated with overwhelming affects and
cognitions - younger children are therefore more
vulnerable to accumulation of risk
– Children in families fraught with conflict experience
profound accumulation of risk when then faced with
political violence
Workshops for
Peace in Palestine
and New Delhi
QuickTim e™ and a
TIFF (Un co m pres sed ) d ecom p res so r
are n eed ed to se e this p ictu re .
Global Convention on Peace and Nonviolence New Delhi,
January 31 - February 1, 2004
Workshops on peace and nonviolent conflict resolution,
QuickTime™ and a
TIFF (Uncompressed) decompressor
are needed to see this picture.
Representations of the individual:
Post-Communist perspective
• Research question: Can living under two different systems
(Western European individualism and Soviet collectivism) lead
to different social representations of the individual?
• Background
– Values of individualism grounded in Renaissance and
humanism (798);
• have roots in economic (Weber), philosophical humanistic
[Kant “rationality, intentional activity and autonomous thought
are supreme capacities of human beings, i.e. they are the End
in Itself” 800] and
• political theories (Locke, “society arises through the voluntary
contract of individuals trying to maximise their own selfinterests” 800}, heritage of US constitution and UN
Declaration of Human Rights
– Is post-modern Western “glorification” of the individual “a
threat to civilisation and society” (804)?
• People lack and need the fulfillment of a purpose beyond
themselves and a sense of social connectedness
Representations of the individual:
Post-Communist perspective
• Under Soviets, totalitarian collectivism was an ideology forced
on citizens, to which they were made to conform (802).
– Freedom of individual was a luxury for the future,
present regarded in terms of ensuring victory of
proletariat (Class struggle)(803);
– ‘herd mentality’ with loss of individual freedoms
and often persecution of dissidents resulted (803)
• Theory: “social representations are forms of thinking
and of activities based on ‘folk logic’. They are formed,
maintained and changed by both implicit and explicit
processes; they have both performative and
constructive functions”
– some are stable, some change over time (805)
– They “prescribe socially shared definitions of social
phenomena” which are “enacted” in language and other
forms of communication (805)
Representations of the
individual: Post-Communist
• Method: 6 countries compared (selected pragmatically
not scientifically), with 1172 people participating
– 2 word association tasks, both contained political,
ideological, and economic terms, one with the word
individual, the other without it
– Questionnaire about respondents’ perceived freedom of
choice in personal satisfaction, professional achievement,
financial situation, and future planning
• Data analysis:
– of the word association tests occurred in the form of
multidimensional scaling using matrices to represent
proximity (808, 809)
– Content analysis used to examine free associations
– Then descriptive analysis, factor analysis, and discriminant
analysis (811)
Representations of the individual:
Post-Communist perspective
• Findings:
– The positive form of individualism --associated with
freedom, human rights, self-determination, democracy -was not destroyed under Soviet rule
• Perhaps because these values are needed for human
survival (820)
– Central Europeans regarded ‘the individual in a market
economy’ more positively; Western Europeans regarded
political systems more positively (821) - why do you think
this is?
• CE people also think they have more personal freedoms
now than WE people do (consider that people evaluate
such issues by comparison with their recent history 822)
• “Interdependence between language and social
representations” (823)
Representations of the individual:
Post-Communist perspective
– How might the differing representations of
the individual in CE and WE influence social
work practice?
– What are some implications for global social
work of the interdependence between
language and social representations?
• Consider that in Czech and Slovak languages,
equivalents for term ‘community’ don’t exist
• The term individual has many variations in
meaning (824)
• Czechs and Slovaks associated individual with
loneliness, also had experienced greatest
repression under Soviets
Discussion of: Learning to care
for clients in their world (Ryan)
• Why is it challenging to learn how
to deliver culturally sensitive care?
• How did the students cope with
immersion in a different culture?
• What are the positive benefits of
international immersion?
Research from a Global
• Why, in global perspective, should
we be concerned about research?
• What are some of the challenges in
conducting global social science
research that has local relevance?
• What are some of the hazards
social science researchers face?
International social
science research
• What are some differences between
international research in the physical
sciences as opposed to the social
• What are some of the problems
prioritized for the future of international
social science research?
• What is the potential future of
international social science research?
Construction of scientific
knowledge on the Mongolian
• How do power differentials work to condition
and constrain scientific knowledge?
• What are the different groups interacting in
the research on the Mongolian steppe and how
do they relate with each other?
• What does the author reference in this
conclusion: “The practices of scapegoating
local populations, ignoring their preferences,
and dismissing their perceptions through the
guise of an objective and rational science does
not advance the cause of development or
science.” (p. 515)
Participatory action and
consumer empowerment
• What is the core commitment
(perspective) of participatory
action/consumer empowerment
• How do these methods empower
consumers of social services?
Participants in the research?
• How are these methods challenging for
researchers to implement?
Global Peace-building
(Doyle and Sambanis, 2000)
• Definition: Peace-building addresses the sources of hostility
and builds local capacities for conflict resolution. Conflicts are
inevitable in plural democracies; peace-building aims “to foster
the social, economic, and political institutions and attitudes that
will prevent these conflicts from turning violent. In effect, peacebuilding is the front line of preventive action.”
• At the levels of community and national
systems, peace-building strategies
– 1) address the local sources of hostility and promote respect
for ethnic, religious, and racial differences,
– 2) develop local capacities for change (local economic
resources, political participation, civil society institutions,
social capital), and
– 3) evaluate and build the international commitment available
to assist change.
Clinical Social Workers play
an Essential Role in Peacebuilding
• Many examples indicate that policy-making is not
enough: Social and psychological changes need to
occur at a grassroots level before, during, and after
peace agreements are signed (Maoz, 2004).
• Even in countries (e.g., Thailand, Lithuania)
where there is relative stability, a profession of
social work, and policies promoting human rights
and welfare, many social workers and other
professionals lack the clinical skills of U.S.
clinical social workers to help carry out human
rights policies.
Clinical Social Work
Advances Peace-building
• Reducing hostilities:
– Healing the psychosocial impact of
traumatic experiences
– Understanding, preventing, and remedying
people’s inhumanity to each other
• Advancing local capacities for change in
the direction of democracy
– Developing people’s self-determination,
affirming their motives for truth, justice,
and compassion
– Building the institutions of civil society
Research issues for developing
culturally appropriate social
work practice
• Define ‘authentization’ and its
application for social workers in nonWestern countries
• How does the author define culture? Do
you agree with it?
• Describe the three central aspects of
applying research cross-culturally:
linguistic and conceptual equivalence,
communication processes and styles in
different cultures, and forming
relationships with people
Discussion of: The New
Face of Terrorism
• What are the characteristics of
individuals who become terorrists?
• What are the psychological processes
used by terrorist groups to enforce
obedience and compliance in their
• What are the most effective measures
one can use to combat terrorism?
International social policy
• Definition of social policy:
“Principles, procedures, and courses of action
established in statute, administrative code and agency
regulation that affect people’s social well-being” (Healey
quoting Dear, p. 219)
• Domestic level: policies that have global impact: ex.
Immigration laws and NAFTA (US)
• Global level: policies formulated by international
intergovernmental bodies: ex. Human rights legislation
in UN
• Issues in cross-national comparative policy analysis:
– Accuracy and comparability of data across nations
– Different definitions of terms and concepts
– Cultural differences in values that underlie policies,
political environment, and process of policy-making
Influencing social policy
• What are the different levels of social
• What are some ways that domestic and
international social policies interface?
• What are some activities social workers
can undertake to influence social policy
(give examples, see Healey p. 226 ff):
– In their native countries
– Internationally
Transferability of welfare
models: Examples from
Finland and Estonia
• How do social policies get
transferred from one country to
another (use specific examples)?
• What structural factors foster
policy development?
• How does cultural diffusion foster
policy development?
Devising Practice Standards for
Aboriginal Out-of-home Care
• Context:
– What is the situation of aboriginal peoples in Australia?
• Concern expressed by Aboriginal leaders about
appointment of white Children’s Guardian
• Over-representation of Aboriginal children in child
welfare system
• Self-determination:
– White Australian definition: freedom of choice
– Aboriginal: collective right to achieve reasonable
standard of living, ensure being able to do things in
Aboriginal way, be free of White domination
• Why are practice standards important in child welfare
• Who develops them and why is it important to include
multiple cultural groups in standard development?
Devising Practice Standards for
Aboriginal Out-of-home Care 2
• Office of the Children’s Guardian, Australia:
– Evaluating out-of-home care
– Advocating for children’s rights
– Ensuring respect for children’s cultures of origin
• Partnership model for developing standards
– Led to insights about challenges facing Aboriginal
out-of-home care agencies
– University partnership that framed drafts of
standards in concert with Aboriginal peoples and
in their language
• Standards available for public review and
Legacy of the South African
Truth and Reconciliation
TRC purposes:
– Mandated by interim government of Mandela and de Klerk
(540), context of strife between African National Congress
and National Party
– Memorialization of victims of human rights violations:
“demand for human rights instituted by force of law” (545)
– “distill truth into reconciliation, suffering into forgiveness,
historical strife into national identity, and word into
divinity” (531)
• What do we learn about memorialization?
– Case of Ahmed Timol, political activist who was murdered
under apartheid, facts of his death covered in lies (532)
– “We use their names to remember the larger picture of
which they were a part” (535)
– “South African society wanted to relieve itself of the
burden of its disappeared, through forms of speech and
action that would make them reappear” (535)
Truth and Reconciliation
Commission (cont)
• Collective Mourning
– Making the dead present by identifying with them: what
if they were here, what would they want?
– Finding a way to go on living without the dead loved
ones: the dead loved one comes to represent an ideal
– Memorializing the name into the future compensates for
the unfairly truncated life
• Transitional justice: unique to nations transitioning “from
authoritarian regimes characterized by gross violations of
human rights to … liberal democracies” (539)
– Need to punish perpetrators and strengthen rule of law
– Need for social healing through public reconciliation
– Build the moral capital of the new regime through
“spectacles of transition” (539)
– “delicately appease” old regime to prevent a coup
– Strengthen the new regime
Truth and Reconciliation
Commission (cont)
• Qualified Amnesty (541):
– “proportionality” standard used to distinguish crimes
motivated by individual hatred and those motivated by
larger political aims (541)
– Provided an alternative to civil war
– Promoted ‘moral awe’ as social attitude (541)
• Setting the agenda in a transitional society is about cultural
attitudes as well as constitutional and civic issues (542),
which TRC established
– Timol’s name “institutes the moral authority of
remembrance” (543) and a school in his name was “a
demand for justice to take place within civil society”
because Black South-Africans had been depived of
education under apartheid
– Emphasis on victim dignity
– “reimagining” the “terms of citizenship”
– Providing a public focus for debate (rather than violence),
resulted in “solidification of political agreement between
warring parties” (544)
Understanding and fighting
Third World poverty: Learning
from the ANC (Saul)
• “Third World” concept: what are the problems
with it, and what is the usefulness of this
• What are current conditions in South Africa (p.
80-1) and why?
• Saul’s critique of NEPAD approach:“Africans
who seek meaningful development for their
continent will have to become participants in
global and continental initiatives that proceed
on the basis of a much more profoundly anticapitalist perspective than the ANC leadership
is currently prepared to countenance.” (81)
Crime in transitional
societies: Example of South
Crime problem in South Africa:
increased because, like all transitional societies, of
generalized social disorder and ‘a deep sense of
normlessness’ (582)
– Increased also because of improved public trust in police
with increased reporting
– Murder rate is down but still 25% higher than the US;
increases in assaults and rapes associated with more
reporting due to ‘growing consciousness of gender
violence’ (584)
– Rising property crime rates are due to “growing
enfranchisement of the population and a sign of economic
growth and democratization” (584)
• Problems inherent in police department:
– 10% of police were brutal, uneducated ‘kitconstables’
– History of use of torture and oppressive ideology
Fighting crime through community
policing: Strategies for transitional
societies (Leggett)
Police departments:
– Are trained largely through experience
– Cannot be rebuilt altogether but must retrain existing staff
SAP police reform:
– Process entails making police accountable to public, rather
than police being an “army of occupation” (589)
– Built on South African police strengths: controlling crowds,
securing public spaces, technical skills (handling dogs and
forensic testing), combating ‘criminal’ organizations
– Torture no longer accepted, so improved detective skills
– Community policing: increased contact with public to improve
police sensitivity and public trust; Community police forums
designed to provide accountability, monitoring, and evaluation
of police (insufficient public participation at present)
– Resulted in over half of victims polled felt police were
doing a good job (591)
Crime, human rights, and
• Human rights advocacy resulted in reduction in
circumstances allowing use of lethal force (591); opposed
by police leaders bec of possible increased police fatalities
• Two major crime prevention strategies:
– National crime prevention strategy (1996): four tenets:
Reconstruct criminal justice system, Environment
redesign to reduced crime; Support community values
and education; Address organized transnational crime;
but had little impact
– National Crime Combating Strategy: focused on areas
with serious and violent crimes, allowed crackdowns
(search and seizure without due process); suppressed
statistical reports of crime; current phase of
normalization involves sector policing, relying on public
identification of problems and intensive community
Aboriginal reconciliation and
restorative justice in
• Premise: there is a connection between microinjustices and
collective case of aboriginal communities as victims (289)
• Context: disenfranchising aborigines through expropriating
land rights, violence against them, prohibiting tribal
cultural practices (282); public controversy about official
recognition of these crimes
• Restorative justice: Defined, p. 279, emphasis on
relationships damaged by crime, and strategies for
repairing them
• Characteristic processes:
– Informal setting, more flexible procedure, guilt
– Diversionary conference (280)
– Four key aspects: accountability, apology, voice,
reconciliation (280ff)
Aboriginal reconciliation and
restorative justice in
• Authors are advocating broader notion of restorative justice to
accommodate structural, collective, and historical injustices
Deliberative Poll on reconciliation in Canberra:
– conference including disproportionately more aboriginal
representatives, in English (with translators available), small
group discussions and open sessions
– Community spirit was established
– Goal of apology not achieved; debates:
• Apologizing suggests personal culpability
• without financial reparation, is apology only superficial?
– Successful reconciliation entails: more outreach of white
Australians to learn aboriginal cultures and include them in
educational curricula (286)
What would be restored in collective restorative justice? (287)
Microjustice and macrojustice (Roy, 288)
Concern that reconciliation not turn into manipulation to preserve
the status quo (289)
Divorced from Justice
• Highlighting and criticizing personal status laws that are
derived from interpretations of Muslim Sharia is religiously
explosive for some
• Human Rights Watch report on Divorce in Egypt (2004), key
– Women and men have different systems for obtaining
divorce (109)
– Obedience complaints: filed by men if a woman leaves the
home without man’s permission (110)
– No female judges
– Many Egyptian women become impoverished and
homeless in divorce process (often giving up all financial
rights in exchange for divorce)
• Two band-aid solutions (no change in underlying legal
– 2000: Kuhl or no-fault divorce instituted
– Family courts established 2004 (114)
Muslim women’s human
• Key human rights violations addressed by Amnesty
International in response to pressure from feminist
groups in 1970s-80s for women’s human rights:
– gender apartheid, female genital mutilation, honor
• Methods: 1991 report, advocacy for 77 women in
detention in Syria (98), publicizing women’s human
rights violations as of 1994
– Arguing against cultural relativism: customs can be
changed, regional activists wanted their country’s
customs reformed (99)
– Rape defined as torture, training investigators to
assist victims (100)
• Vienna Declaration: included statement that violence
against women was a violation of human rights (1993)
Muslim women’s human
rights (cont)
• UN 4th World Conference on Women, 1995, AI
included women prisoners, refugees, asylum seekers
and displaced women
• All women in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan defined
as ‘prisoners of conscience’ (101) and criticized
government policies in Sudan that imposed
government’s interpretation of Islamic law on all
• Sponsoring national seminars on eradicating FGM
(1996), p. 102
• Report on Honor Killings in Pakistan (1999) (102)
• Recognition of the home as a place of terror of
women, campaigned against forced marriages, abuse
of domestic workers, debt bondage, trafficking, and
sexual slavery
AI and Muslim women’s
human rights
• International Criminal Court - in force in
2002 makes it possible to prosecute
human rights violations
– Heads of state, officials can be prosecuted
– Victims of domestic violence, trafficking and
bonded labor can bring suit
• Political asylum laws broadened to
include gender discrimination
• UN Commission on Human Rights
passed resolutions condeming marital
rape, violence against women, in favor
of reproductive rights and sexual health
Consciousness-raising and
community development
• Context: literacy education in Recife, Brazil
• Problem: internalization of viewpoint of
oppressor about onself, one’s future, and one’s
• Results: passivity, despair
• Remedy: group affirmation of common
experiences of oppression, ‘naming,’
compounding individual power through group
• Results: motivation for self-education,
community strengthening and development,
affirmation of chosen cultural values, group
action to advance justice
Social exclusion
• Defines a ‘new poverty’ characterized by
rupture between individual and society in
context of rapid technological change (Healey,
p. 273)
• “loss of solidarity as part of a population no
longer participates in significant opportunities
available in a society” (273)
• Defined globally in terms of gaps between
richest and poorest nations
• Examples: refugees, street children, with
poverty as major defining feature
Balancing economic and
social development
• Human capital development:
‘investments in people that increase
• Social capital development: ‘capacitybuilding in communities’, building on
indigenous groups
• Encouragement of self-employment and
other productive employment efforts
(Healey, p. 268)
Grameen Bank
• Underlying philosophy
– “poverty is the absence of all human rights”
– peace cannot be viable when poverty exists
– People who are poor are most vulnerable to victimization by
unscrupulous lenders, corrupt public officials, or terrorist leaders
– Fighting poverty is the best way to fight terrorism
– people who are poor can be entrusted to honor loans and better
themselves and their families: “once the poor can unleash their
energy and creativity, poverty will disappear very quickly” (6)
– Facts about world poverty (see p. 1): “Globalization must not
become financial imperialism” (5)
– “we can reconfigure our world if we reconfigure our mindset” (5)
• How Yunus started Grameen Bank
– Loaning his own money to his neighbors (next door to his
campus!) in Bangladesh to help them get free of enslaving
– Donations grew and poor increasingly ran it
– The bank became self-supporting as people repaid loans
Grameen Bank - 2
• 7 million borrowers by 2006 (30 years), mostly
women - 80% of Bangladesh families reached
• Repayment rate is 99%
• Loans totalled about 6 billion
• The bank is self-supporting and makes a profit
• 58% of its borrowers have crossed the poverty line
• Women sent children to school, bank now gives
30,000 scholarships every year; 13,000 students
have student loans, with 7,000 per year
• They created Grameen phone (mobile phone
company) to bring ICT to poor people - the goal is
to give majority ownership to the poor women of
Grameen bank
• He proposes a ‘social business’ - as a solution to
contemporary economic problems (p. 4)
Advancing human rights
policy: Example of Chiapas
• Consider the history of working to advance human
rights in Mexico.
• Define civil society. What is its function in advancing
human rights?
• What occurs in the ‘low intensity war’ waged by the
government military forces against the indigenous
people of Chiapas? what are the consequences of this
• What has been the role of indigenous women in the
struggle for human rights and what are some results of
their efforts?
• What is the meaning of the conclusion that “state policy
agendas must be consistent with indigenous values;
otherwise, indigenous people will seek alternative
institutions to promote democratic principles” (p. 86).
Zapatista liberation army
Advocating for human rights
in Vieques, Puerto Rico
• What were the health consequences for
the Viequenses of continued exposure
to US war-simulation exercises?
• What organizations were developed to
advocate for cessation of military
exercises in Vieques?
• What was the new strategy of the
community organization effort?
• What specific activities did they
undertake to accomplish their goals?
Preventing AIDS in China
and South Africa
• What factors are associated with participating in HIV-STD
prevention activities among rural-to-urban Chinese
– Context: Population mobility associated with increased risk
for HIV infection because of:
• lack of knowledge about HIV risk,
• instability of sexual partners in mobile populations,
• unemployment and reliance on jobs as sex workers
• Return to community of origin then spreads HIV
• High-risk behaviors are highly stigmatized in Chinese
– China is in early stages of AIDS epidemic
• Method: surveyed a sample of 4,208 migrants in Beijing and
Nanjing, ages 18-30, recruited in public places, primarily Han
Chinese ethnicity; logistic regression statistical analysis used
Preventing AIDS in China
and South Africa
• Findings:
– The more people know about HIV, the more likely they are to
participate in prevention
– The more people engage in high-risk behaviors (engaging in high
risk sexual behaviors, using drugs), the less likely they are to
– Risk of peer involvement or stigma discouraged people from
– Those who migrated because they wanted to learn about the
outside world were also more willing to participate
• Knowledge is necessary but not sufficient to foster behaviorchange and motivation; reducing stigma is important in
increasing participation
• Those with the highest risk behaviors are most difficult to
recruit into health care and promotion
Preventing AIDS in China
and South Africa
• South African context: prevalence rate of HIV infection
22.4% among pregnant women; 12.5% for all South
• Experimental design: do students exposed to intensive
teacher-led interventions have more knowledge about
HIV and AIDS prevention, use safer sex, and reduced
stigma towards those with AIDS?
• Sample: 9th graders in 22 schools in KwaZulu-Natal;
Statistical and process analysis
• Findings:
– Student knowledge increased significantly but safer
sex practices did not
– Teachers implemented the program variably, those
who used it more were more effective in increasing
safe sex practices
Peace-building in Violent
Context: 1993 Oslo peace accords between Israelis and
Palestinians have broken down (p. 565)- so How can the
goals of peacebuilding be realized when there is no
• Overall strategy: “dialogues and joint people-to-people
projects at the grassroots level that aim to transform
the relations between the sides” (564)
• Definition of peace-building:
– “encompasses, generates, and sustains a full array of
processes, approaches, and stages needed to
transform a conflict toward a more sustainable,
peaceful relationship” (564)
– examples of Northern Ireland and South African
truth and reconciliation indicate that policy-making is
not enough -- social and psychological changes need
to occur at grassroots level before, during and after
peace agreements are signed
Peace-building in Violent Conflict (2)
Aims of peacebuilding:
– Transform the warlike behaviors of communities
– Prevent relapse into violent conflict
– Transformative dialogue (per Gergen et al): mutual listening,
empathizing, “including the other in realm of relational moral
responsibility” (565)
Peacebuilding activities include:
– Single and long-term meetings, dialogues among schoolteachers,
university students, professors, and other professionals
– Workshops with youth (studied here, p. 566) by Israel-Palestine
Center for Research and Information, an NGO
– Resulted in participants experiencing each other as more ‘good
hearted’ ‘tolerant’ and ‘considerate’ than they had before the
workshops (567)
Organizations continuing to implement peace-building even after 2000
violence (568) - characterized by equality between participants from both
sides of conflict:
– Peace Research Institute in the Middle East
– Israel-Palestine Center for Research and Information
– Middle East Children Association
– Crossing Borders
– School for Peace
– The Jerusalem Link
Peace-building in Violent Conflict (3)
• Characteristics of peace-building organizations:
– Equal representation of Israelis and Palestinians
– Geographic location on West Bank not only in
Israeli Jewish locations
– Languages are English, Hebrew, and Arabic
• Relevance of organizations’ work given lack of peacemaking by political leaders (572):
– “Maintain an infrastructure of constructive
relationships between the sides”
– “provide a support system for those of both sides
that still believe in peace”
– Prevent extremists from winning
– Prevent mutual dehumanization by maintaining
constructive interactions between both sides
Services for children
(Segal paper)
• Three categories: Developmental, preventative, or
• Differences in beliefs about parental rights:
– Japan’s tradition of Shinken (parents’ rights and
duty to protect the child)
– compared with US -- Illinois Best Interests of the
Child Act
• Values and resource allocation:
– Japan has committed resources to to universal
maternal and child health and child-rearing
– US has not and consequently has 16% of children
under poverty line with higher rates of juvenile
delinquency, teen pregnancy, substance abuse as
well as higher infant mortality
Empowerment in difficulty
• Background: child welfare in Romania (471)
– Responses to crisis in child care: adoption, improving local
institutions (471)
– International relief, 1991-1994
– 1993 National Committee for Child Protection founded,
National Plan of Action for Children (1995), ultimately
resulting in child welfare legislation and public agency
• Problems in international intervening:
Lack of coordination of NGOs (471)
Criticism of local caregivers (472)
Lack of recognition of community poverty
Staff not provided with training/development (472)
Relief agencies left in 1994, conditions became more grim
outside institutions
• What organizations were involved in the intervention?
Empowerment in difficulty
• What are the six principles of empowerment that guided the
intervention practice?
A vision,
self-determination (477),
focus on strengths (477),
“universality of social conditions” such as poverty (477),
“developmental” – public policy component (478),
community context (478)
• What obstacles did the international team encounter and how
did they respond to them?
– Relevance of instructional materials (479)
– Empowering Romanians to use own problem-solving skills (479)
(transitional from totalitarian domination)
– Legacies of Communist-era management and organizational styles
– Respecting traditions (485)
International Orphan
Crisis and Solutions
100 million destitute children worldwide: why?
– Depletion of extended family because of migration, Westernization,
AIDS, demographic changes; remaining families are less willing take
– Cultural values against adoption
• Africa: beliefs that adopting children imports alien spirits into the
family, fears that children will be enslaved
• Fear of inadequate genes, disruption of familial line (Asia)
• National efforts at population control with bias against girl children
– Adopted children may be regarded as 2nd class in the family and more
prone to maltreatment, even indentured servitude
– AIDS crisis, genocide, famines: 650,000 children orphaned by AIDS in
Kenya (2004)
– Many African and other underdeveloped countries have not
yet developed national policy responses to their orphan crises
– Over-representation of African American children in US child welfare
Some children are sold into slavery conditions (estimated 75,000/year)
Recognition that institutionalization has many negative effects including
PTSD, mental health problems, developmental delays, inadequate
International Orphan
Crisis and Solutions (2)
Proposed solutions:
– Family-based foster orphan care (but it does not provide a
child with a permanent family)
– Sustainable community-based programs (CBOs) to care for
• International adoption is one solution; issues:
• Need for heightened regulation due to gray or blackmarket
• Transracial adoptions and child’s cultural identity
formation: preference for adoptions by families of the
same race and culture according to NABSW and UN
Convention on the Rights of the Child
• Problem of lack of research on the process and outcomes;
existing research about impact of transracial adoption on
children’s self-esteem and identity has contradictory
International Orphan
Crisis and Solutions (3)
Adoption in the US:
– Most people in US approve of transracial adoptions - Multiethnic
Placement Act (1994) and Removal of Barriers to Interethnic
Adoption Act (2002) prohibit race from being a primary factor in
public adoptions
– In 2005 in US 22,000 children have been adopted from other
countries, primarily China, Russia, Guatemala, South Korea,
Ukraine and the rate has been rising - why?
• Increased adoption in general, as domestic adoptions in US
have also increased by 64% from 1997-2002
• Some parents hesitant about adopting older children with
histories of abuse and neglect or maternal substance abuse
• Concerns about open adoption policies
• Humanitarian concern for children whose lives are in jeopardy
in other countries
– Process: immigration visas, homestudies, proof that child was an
orphan in sending country
– Hague Convention ratified in 2000, provisions to be implemented
Guatemalan perceptions of
• Rapid increase in Guatemalan children
adopted by US couples
• Sensationalist reports of corruption but little
actual research, esp about local perceptions of
Guatemalan adoption
• Method: interviews of 23 Guatemalans, most
were parents, diverse SES, from Antigua
– Reasons for giving children up for adoption:
Poverty, paternal abandonment, risk of
infant death, concern about inadequate
attention in orphanages or abandoned
child’s life on the streets, belief that
adopted children are treated well
Guatemalan perceptions of
adoption (2)
• Respondents endorsed the view that
adopted children could have a good
future in US
• Some concerns about trafficking, stolen
children, fear of organ donation
• In Guatemala, fear of ‘bad blood’ and
machismo (not wanting another man’s
children in the home) can interfere with
domestic adoptions
• Wealthy Guatemalans are not
indigenous; most children placed for
adoption are indigenous
Studying Communities’ Informal
Care and Welfare Systems
in Asian-Pacific Countries
• What are informal care and welfare
systems and why are they important?
• What were the aims of the project?
• Who was involved in carrying out this
study? (444)
• What were the central findings of the
• How was the project evaluated?
Should global social work
have a clinical dimension?
Is there a need for it? Examples:
• Suicide prevention (Pelkonen & Martunen)
– Suicide was the cause of death among 34% of teenage
males in Finland and is major problem worldwide
– Psychosocial treatments effective; and social isolation and
alienation as well as parent mental illness and relationhip
problems are major contributors
• Helping psychiatric patients before hospitalization (Chadda et
– Interconnectedness of social networks powerfully
influences cultural values around causes of problems and
help-seeking and thus help-seeking behavior
– Availability of professional mental health care,
socioeconomic resources, also powerfully affect helpseeking
– How to regulate quality:
• Training programs giving certificates/degrees
• Government recognition of individuals, modalities, and
• Reimbursement standards set by government or private
• State-regulated licensure with continuing credentials
For continuing education about
human rights issues and global
social work practice see:
• UN High Commission on Human Rights:
• Human Rights Watch:
• Amnesty International:,
• General:
The relation between social
work theory and practice in
Hong Kong
• Notice the government proposal to set social
service standards. Do you think this is
desirable for your country (p. 543)?
• “Theory guides practice which in turn validates
and modifies theory” (p. 548). Do you agree?
Why or why not?
• What contextual factors are influencing the
development of social work theory in your
country (try to be specific about the
contextual factor and the theory)?
Conflict Resolution across the
• “Our approach focuses on reorienting people from
viewing conflict as a negative and destructive
occurrence, to seeing the potential, when it exists, for
positive change and growth” (p. 33). Can you think of
examples in your own practice of when conflict can be
used for positive change and growth?
• Summarize the way the ICCR uses the following
– Peer mediation programs
– Conflict resolution training in curriculum
– Cooperative learning and constructive controversy in
classroom learning
– Instruction of adults to shift the culture towards
Synthesizing a model of global
social work practice for social
workers starting from the U.S.
• What have your learned are some of the key
issues you need to be aware of as a U.S. social
worker working with professionals and lay
persons in other countries?
• What is historical trauma and why is it
important to understand it when working with
persons in other countries?
• How would you as a social worker approach
planning your work with persons in a
community in a country with which you are
Spirituality and social
work practice
• Histories specific to a country of
relationship between religious traditions
and spirituality and broader cultural
• Context of Latvia:
– Family wholeness and ecology
– Spirituality as a perspective that is
supportive of families
• Comments on the context of Lithuania
– “Lietuva Brange” and farewell for this year…

Global Social Work Practice