De Novo ‘18
International Conference & Students’ Meet

"Social Work and Community Engagement: Perspectives from Practice, Research and Education”

December 5,6 & 7 DiST campus, Kerala, India

Conference Themes

The De Novo ’18 Conference “Social Work and Community Engagement: Perspectives from Practice, Research and Education” is intended to allow discussion and consideration of a wide range of issues relating to social work and community engagement. Conference organisers understand ‘community engagement’ in its broadest sense to include such aspects of social work practice as community development, work with community organisations, community impact planning and research and education activities focused on community. This intentionally broad scope merges a diverse range of activities and concepts. These include social work practice, research and education dealing explicitly with community-related issues or which occur in clearly identified community settings, but also recognises social work’s connections with a range of issues, practices and approaches that relate to human and community wellbeing in a broader and more holistic sense. Implicit in such an expansive exploration of community engagement are opportunities for the development of knowledge and skills that enhance social work practice, and the provision of opportunities to compare, contrast and adapt, as appropriate, social work and welfare policies and practices in and from diverse international contexts.

The De Novo ’18 conference offers an opportunity to engage with these areas, share accounts of innovative practice and ideas, and connect with others working in similar areas and addressing similar issues. It also provides a unique opportunity to engage in inter-cultural learning and exchange, gaining insights into the ways in which Indian social workers and organisations are addressing health related issues. In particular the conference will welcome papers/presentations that address the following broad themes:

Social Work Practice in Community Settings and with Community Related Issues

Contributions addressing this theme will be varied and diverse but particular attention will be given to contributions that document and discuss direct practice with community issues and in community-based settings. This may include, but will not be limited to, community development projects; Community-based public health projects; community-based approaches to mental health; work in NGOs and government agencies concerned with communities; etc.

Research Relating to Social Work in Community Settings and/or with Community Related Issues

Submissions addressing this theme will present examples of research with a particular focus on, or relevance to, social work and community engagement. This may include studies into the social impact of particular community issues but may also include research which seeks to analyse communities; evaluate community-based projects or particular practice approaches; research that presents new and innovative practice approaches; or other research which examines connections between social work, communities and human wellbeing.

Education for Social Work in Community Settings and with Community Related Issues

The papers in this theme will provide an opportunity to critically examine the ways in which social work educators support students in developing the skills, knowledge and values required for effective social work practice and community engagement. Contributors may, for example, present case studies or exemplars of effective educational practice; review curriculum requirements; suggest innovative educational approaches; examine relevant pedagogical theories; and assess the effectiveness of current educational approaches.