You are here

The SAGE Handbook of Social Work Research

The SAGE Handbook of Social Work Research

First Edition
Edited by:

November 2009 | 600 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
"This is an ambitious book. It aims at nothing less than a comprehensive account of the state of the art of social work research internationally and an intellectually original statement that will help to define and shape social work research. Those with a serious interest in social work research will agree that this is a major undertaking and one that should put social work research 'on the map'." -

Ian Sinclair, University of York, UK

"This terrific Handbook provides an essential map for navigating the complex currents of social work research today. It resists polemical and simplistic binaries to chart a course that emphasizes diversity, pluralism and sensitivity to political contexts in many featured exemplars. As key chapters note, inherent tensions at the heart of social work itself are mirrored in current debates about the purposes and methods of social work research. Rather than patch over differences, the volume invites us to understand historical roots of unresolvable tensions, and live with them. The international scope of the volume is unique--scholars from more than a dozen different countries were involved --and its broad scope counters the tendency toward parochialism of much North American literature. The Handbook should be essential reading for students and academics." -

Catherine Riessman, Boston University, USA

The SAGE Handbook of Social Work Research provides a comprehensive, internationally-focused account of leading social work research, offering an original and defining statement on contemporary theory and practice within the field. The groundbreaking Handbook engages critically with the nature and role of social work research and evaluation in contemporary societies around the globe, and asks four key questions:

- What is the role and purpose of social work research?

- What contexts shape the practice and purpose of social work research?

- How can we maximise the quality of the practice of social work research?

- How can the aims of social work in its varied domains be met through social work research?

Ranging over local, national and international issues, and exploring questions of theory and practice, this is a diverse and constructively organized overview of the field. It will quickly be recognized as a benchmark in the expanding field of social work research, setting the agenda for future work in the arena.

Ian Shaw, Katharine Briar-Lawson, Joan Orme, Roy Ruckdeschel
Mapping Social Work Research: Pasts, Presents and Futures
f004 Nigel Parton and Stuart Kirk
The Nature and Purposes of Social Work
Annette Boaz and James Blewett
Providing Objective, Impartial Evidence for Decision Making and Public Accountability
Joan Orme and Katharine Briar-Lawson
Theory and Knowledge about Social Problems to Enhance Policy Development
f004 Daniel Gredig and Jeanne C Marsh
Improving Intervention and Practice
Susan White and Gerhard Riemann
Researching Our Own Domains: Research as Practice in ‘Learning Organizations’
f004 Bob Pease
Challenging the Dominant Paradigm: Social Work Research, Social Justice and Social Change
f004 Ian Shaw and Joan Zlotnik
Research and Government
Haluk Soydan
Politics and Values in Social Work Research
f004 Richard Hugman
Social Work Research and Ethics
Steve Trevillion
From Social Work Practice to Social Work Research: An Emergent Approach to a Basic Problem
Mikko Mantysaari and Richard Weatherley
Theory and Theorizing: Intellectual Contexts of Social Work Research
Roy Ruckdeschel and Adrienne Chambon
The Uses of Social Work Research
f004 Ian Shaw
Places in Time: Contextualizing Social Work Research
Jackie Powell and Blanca Ramos
The Practice of Social Work Research
Ian Shaw
Logics, Qualities and Quality of Social Work Research
Geraldine Macdonald and Jennie Popay
Evidence and Practice: The Knowledge Challenge for Social Work
Jane F Gilgun
Methods for Enhancing Theory and Knowledge About Problems, Policies, and Practice
Carmen Lavoie, Judy MacDonald and Elizabeth Whitmore
Methods for Understanding, Learning and Social Justice
Jennifer C Greene, Peter Sommerfeld, and Wendy L Haight
Mixing Methods in Social Work Research
f004 Katharine Briar-Lawson, Robyn Munford and Jackie Sanders
Challenges and Directions in the Practice of Social Work Research
f004 Linda Briskman
Karen Staller and Tracie Mafile'o
Mary Ruffalo, June Thoburn and Paula Allen-Meares
Children, Young People and Families
f004 Paul Bywaters and Michael Ungar
Health and Well-being
Sally French and John Swain
f004 Peter Huxley, Michael Sheppard and Martin Webber
Mental Health
f004 Philip McCallion
Social Work Research and Aging
Fergus McNeill, Dennis Bracken and Alan Clarke
Social Work in Criminal Justice
Joan Orme, Roy Ruckdeschel and Katharine Briar-Lawson
Challenges and Directions in Social Work Research and Social Work Practice

'Overall, then, the Handbook is undoubtedly a great success. It represents a state-of-the-art mapping of the parameters of social work research. Both structure and content lend themselves to what will certainly come to be regarded as a benchmark statement within the field... the editors of the Handbook have undoubtedly fulfilled their ambitions by producing what by any standards is a benchmark text which is well worth the investment - time, effort, money (!) - entailed in getting to grips with the stimulating and rewarding debates within. It is hard to envisage how this undertaking could have been more impressive...'
Qualitative Social Work Journal

This is a highly ambitious, well thought out, carefully constructed, and thought-provoking volume that 'maps' social work research past and present. It differs markedly from most edited texts in its combination of diversity, coherence, and comprehensiveness... an original, stimulating and readable book in which not a single chapter is a rehash of the writer's previously published papers, as happens all too often in edited volumes. The modest term 'handbook' in its title hardly does justice to the book's depth, scope, and quality. While it can certainly serve as a ready reference guide, its thoughtfulness and questioning make it much more than a compendium of information, however rich. It is highly recommended for social work professionals throughout the Western world.

International Social Work Journal

'This is an internationally relevant handbook in the real sense of the word, as it provides a holistic and thorough overview of social work research in its current state... I have had the book for some months now and it fills me with optimism every time I pick it up. It has had a similar effect on nervous final-year social work students studying research, as they have expressed a huge sigh of relief after

examining this text because it offers so much knowledge and expertise in one place. It is clearly a must-have textbook for all final-year undergraduates, postgraduates, post-qualifying and research students because there is something for all inside. I would even go as far as to say it is an unrivalled international text that practitioners should also have if they feel serious about transforming the profession that they are part of.'

British Journal of Social Work

This textbook covers the key elements of social work research. It provides in-depth summaries of more specialist issues. The content is quite complex in places so I would not recommend this to the less able students initially.

Mr Jeremy Dixon
Dept of Social and Policy Sciences, Bath University
November 3, 2015

A sound research text

Joy Gauci
Institute of Health, Social Care and Psychology, Worcester University
September 23, 2014

Excellent Resource for Social Work Research Students and Practitioners.

Professor Caroline McGregor
Dept of Political Science & Sociology, National University of Ireland, Galway
May 21, 2014

This is a detailed and thoughtful resource for developing social work researchers. The introductory material creates a useful and thought-provoking context for the well devleoped research material.

Mr Tim Odell
Dept of Health,Wellbeing & the family, Canterbury Christ Church University
April 8, 2014

Highly recommended

Ms Caroline Hickman
Social & Policy Sciences, University of Bath
January 9, 2014

Excellent coverage of a wide array of relevent topics
Well organised

Dr Margarete Parrish
School of Health and Social Care, Bournemouth University
December 3, 2013

An excellent text with a wide range of authors contributing to the chapters. Good to see such a comprehensive book devoted to social work research.

Dr Leanne Robins
Child and Family Research Centre, National University of Ireland, Galway
November 14, 2013

Detailed and useful text providing reference and direction when undertaking social work research

Mr Mick Wilkinson
Social Work and Professional Practice, Nottingham Trent University
November 11, 2013

Informative and clearly presented. This books gives meaning and understanding to social work research. It combines a straight forward approach with student friendly text.

Ms Lorraine Ellames
Academy, Havering College of Further and Higher Education
July 17, 2013

Sample Materials & Chapters

Editorial Essay

Chapter One

Chapter Two

For instructors

This book is not available as an inspection copy. For more information contact your local sales representative.

Purchasing options

Please select a format:

ISBN: 9781412934992
ISBN: 9781412934985

SAGE Knowledge is the ultimate social sciences digital library for students, researchers, and faculty. Hosting more than 4,400 titles, it includes an expansive range of SAGE eBook and eReference content, including scholarly monographs, reference works, handbooks, series, professional development titles, and more.

The platform allows researchers to cross-search and seamlessly access a wide breadth of must-have SAGE book and reference content from one source.

SAGE Knowledge brings together high-quality content from across our imprints, including CQ Press and Corwin titles.