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The author argues that we must stop and take a look at what our insistence on human labour as the basis of our society is doing to us, and begin to search for possible alternatives. We need the vision and the courage to aim for the highest level of technology attainable for the widest possible use in both industry and services. We need financial arrangements that will encourage people to invent themselves out of work. Our goal, the article argues, must be the reduction of human labour to the greatest extent possible, to free people for more enjoyable, creative, human activities.
The subject of part‐time work is one which has become increasingly important in industrialised economies where it accounts for a substantial and growing proportion of total employment. It is estimated that in 1970, average annual hours worked per employee amounted to only 60% of those for 1870. Two major factors are attributed to explaining the underlying trend towards a reduction in working time: (a) the increase in the number of voluntary part‐time employees and (b) the decrease in average annual number of days worked per employee (Kok and de Neubourg, 1986). The authors noted that the growth rate of part‐time employment in many countries was greater than the corresponding rate of growth in full‐time employment.
While there has been the emergence of a substantial body of scholarship on the place of religion and spirituality in social work, the predominant voices in this discourse…
While there has been the emergence of a substantial body of scholarship on the place of religion and spirituality in social work, the predominant voices in this discourse have primarily been authors from the English-speaking North Atlantic countries. The purpose of this paper is to redress this issue by exploring the impact of other national perspectives.
Using a post-colonial perspective, the author reflects on the issues which emerged in seeking to develop a truly international perspective on religion and spirituality in social work.
There are important historical and contextual differences between countries which influence how social work is practiced, as well as different understandings as to what social work is. These differences are reflected in social workers’ understandings as to how religion and spirituality can be utilised in social work practice. It is also noted that the growing enthusiasm of social workers to embrace religion and spirituality in their practice needs to be tempered by the realisation that religion and spirituality can be harmful in some circumstances.
This paper demonstrates how drawing on a wider range of international perspectives has the potential to enrich social work scholarship and practice.
The march of time is relentless; it brings with it ever increasing technological innovations that cannot bypass or skip over the delivery of personal social services…
The march of time is relentless; it brings with it ever increasing technological innovations that cannot bypass or skip over the delivery of personal social services. Within these services, the computer has already found its way to management and research personnel. They itch to put it to use to crunch out the kind of data that they feel they need in order to deliver more cost‐effective services to higher priority targets. The fly in the ointment is the practitioners; they just cannot or will not produce reliable data of the type needed for the number crunchers.
This chapter describes an online certificate program offered to refugees who are in refugee camps and other populations living on the margins. The program was created in…
This chapter describes an online certificate program offered to refugees who are in refugee camps and other populations living on the margins. The program was created in partnership with diverse stakeholders to reflect the need for pathways to higher education for refugees who have few, if any, opportunities to participate in higher education. The authors briefly discuss the gaps in services in refugee camps that informed and inspired the creation of an online program that focuses on social work skills. Next, the authors provide a background and description of a multi-player partnership that was needed to create the pathway for refugees to attain higher education credentials in an accredited US institution and share findings from instructor and program feedback instruments, as well as focus groups, that speak to elements of the program, both in design and in implementation. The chapter concludes with a recommendation, for what can be implemented in online social work education as to enhance student experience and create possibilities of sharing varied values and respect across differences, as well as common language of social justice and transformation.
With the ups and downs of the economy, unemployment comes and goes as a public policy issue. As of November 1990, the official US unemployment rate stood at 5.9 percent, above the 16 year low of 5.0 percent that had been reached earlier in the year. Around the 5 percent level of unemployment, a majority of economists say that the labour market is near the “natural rate of unemployment”, the rate at which labour shortages lead to wage increases, pushing inflation higher. At this level, few people talk about unemployment as an economic or a political problem. Unemployment has not been a major issue in recent US election campaigns. Indeed, there has been far more public discussion about the possibility of labour shortages in the United States during the coming years. Although a US recession has probably arrived, the Federal Reserve Board and most economists are more worried about inflation than about unemployment. Assuredly, however, as the recession deepens, unemployment will rise and will again be in the spotlight. Politicans will give speeches. Makeshift legislation will be enacted. And then, just as assuredly, with the next economic recovery, unemployment will fade once again from the political agenda.
The social science research community in higher education in the United Kingdom constitutes the largest group of staff covered by any of the six research councils. Over 25% of the people entered in the 2001 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) had a social science base. This chapter examines the way the pattern of social science research in the UK has been affected by, mainly, the RAE, the interpretations and strategic implementations that flow from it, and the funding allocations it informs. It draws on my own previous work, and that of others across a range of social science disciplines, as well as a small survey of active researchers conducted in late 2004/early 2005 as processes were set in train for the 2008 exercise. The critique of a process based mainly on peer review provides food for thought for those in Australia, where a research quality assessment exercise is in prospect. Paradoxically, the UK may be moving, after 2008, to an approach close to the one being abandoned in Australia.
As the next generation of social workers in a continent bedecked by oppressive customs, it is cardinal that the voices of social work students be heard. This study aims to…
As the next generation of social workers in a continent bedecked by oppressive customs, it is cardinal that the voices of social work students be heard. This study aims to share the reflections of Nigerian BSW students about anti-oppressive approach to professional practice.
Drawing on a qualitative approach, semi-structured interviews were conducted among fourth-year social work students at one of the elite universities in the southern region of Nigeria.
Results reveal that, although willing to challenge oppressive practices, social work students are ill-equipped to apply anti-oppressive approach to social work practice in Nigeria.
This study makes an important contribution to the field and to the existing literature because the findings have broader implications for social work education in Nigeria.
In enforcing the suggestions of this study, it is expected that social work education will become able to produce competently trained students who are only knowledgeable about anti-oppressive social work but are equally prepared to address Nigeria’s myriad oppressive practices that have long undermined the nation’s quest for social development.
The application of the anti-oppressive approach to social work practice is integral to ridding society of all forms of overt social injustice and other forms of latent oppressive policies.
Suggestions are offered to Nigerian social work educators toward ensuring that students are not only well equipped in the understanding of anti-oppressive social work but also ready to apply this model to professional social work practice following their graduation.
The word Ubuntu has become widely known around the world as an African humanitarian wisdom that promotes international solidarity and Indigenous knowledge. The appeal of…
The word Ubuntu has become widely known around the world as an African humanitarian wisdom that promotes international solidarity and Indigenous knowledge. The appeal of Ubuntu,as an African traditional philosophy is the emphasis on concern for fellow human beings. The primary aim of this critical literature review is to demonstrate the role Ubuntu can play in enriching social work and shifting the Euro-American foundations of the profession in teaching diaspora African students and practicing social work with diaspora African communities. The humanitarian values of Ubuntu, however, need not be limited to Africans.
This chapter explores how Ubuntu can be adopted in teaching social work and also enriching social work theoretical underpinnings. Social work has roots in Western philosophical foundations and cultural experiences, with a primary focus on supporting disadvantaged people in communities where it is practiced.However, there is a recognised need to expand this Western orientation to include other views as social work expands to be a global academic and practice profession.
An approach to learning and teaching based on Ubuntu has been described as ‘Ubuntugogy’ (Bangura, 2005). Ubuntugogy represents a holistic educational paradigm where education plays a role beyond an individual’s acquisition of knowledge and skills but instead aims at total development for the individual scholar, their community and their physical and social environment. Social work education is aimed at equipping students with the skills to contribute to the welfare of other human beings in the same way Ubuntugogy recognises the importance of mastering skills to transform individual learners and their communities. Both are therefore focused on practical education to create a world that meets the needs of the individuals and their communities.
Ubuntu approaches view education as a means for struggle for survival and liberation from oppression. There are similar approaches in education literature that emphasise the cultural and historical aspects of education (Lave, 2019). Ubuntu philosophy has roots in African traditions and history that also have clear echoes in other traditional societies that emphasise interdependence and relationships between people and their physical world in an intricate web of life.
Social work can learn from Ubuntu if it is to move beyond its traditional Western roots. Ubuntu and social work share the commonality of concern for human welfare. Ubuntu goes a step further in emphasising the intricate linkages between humans and nature in a non-hierarchical web. Social work can also enrich Ubuntu with its body of knowledge, accumulated since the late 19th century, in practical application of the identified Ubuntu ideals. This chapter presents an attempt at such a dialogue.
Nation states’ neoliberal policies do not regard asylum seekers and undocumented migrants as deserving of a good life. Social work in welfare states is highly connected to…
Nation states’ neoliberal policies do not regard asylum seekers and undocumented migrants as deserving of a good life. Social work in welfare states is highly connected to the policies of nation states. There is a need to address theories in social work that have a transnational focus at the local level. Axel Honneth’s recognition theory enables an approach to forced migration from the direction of personal relations and personhood itself. The core idea is that if people cannot gain recognition, this causes harm to their self-realisation. The purpose of this paper is discuss how the recognition theory overcomes a national focus in social work.
This paper is theoretical. The relations of recognition are discussed in the context of transnational social work in welfare states with forced migrants.
The theory of recognition in social work practice with people who do not have a residence permit is best articulated by an understanding of rights concerning all the attributes of the person, i.e. as a needy being, autonomous and particular in a community.
Forced migrants’ backgrounds provide a specific backdrop for misrecognition, which may harm self-relations. The relations of recognition contribute to social work by providing the sensitivity required to evaluate the complexity of views and attitudes that affect the way we encounter service users. The relations of recognition (care, respect and esteem) give normative criteria for communication in order to take another person as a person, which, in turn, contributes to healthy self-relations of forced migrants.