Further Development of Research Skills of Mid-Career Social Work Academics: Supportive Learning Sets, Mixed Methodologies and Research Placements

Lead Research Organisation: Middlesex University
Department Name: School of Health and Education


Abstracts are not currently available in GtR for all funded research. This is normally because the abstract was not required at the time of proposal submission, but may be because it included sensitive information such as personal details.


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Description Social work is sometimes under attack as a profession for not applying research in the interventions being applied in the field. This grant was used to offer a supportive menu of research experiences combined with protected time to help mid career social work academics further develop research skills.
Exploitation Route Conferences; two special journal issues of SWSSR came from the ESRC grant, and are used in teaching and referred to by social workers.
Sectors Communities and Social Services/Policy

Description Two special issues of SWSSR peer reviewed journal (Social Work and Social Sciences Review) published in 2012 and 2013 were directly related to the ESRC grant. These have been referred to in social work classes at universities increasing the attention to social work research and social justice and methodologies.
First Year Of Impact 2012
Sector Communities and Social Services/Policy
Impact Types Policy & public services

Description Funded and published research results ES/H023402/1 have impact on policy about social work profession.
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Policies are currently being developed which challenge the training effectiveness of HEI for social work profession, under cut the government resourcing of social work bursaries, and undermine the professional education of this profession. It is an urgent and dire situation at this time. Social work public services are being privatized and marginalized. The research results that investing in the mid career social work academics exposure to a menu of research rich options enhanced their positive attitude towards research, increased their direct participation in research, and improved their teaching of social work students, are one of very few published studies on this topic. It is being discussed in forums and mentioned as a time of hope when government supported the investment in research on social work education and practice. This is very important to our field. I wish the published paper could be highlighted in some way on the ESRC website, for easy reference. ES/H023402/1
Description Ongoing Engagement of Mid-Career Social work Academics based on the original grant ES/H023402/1 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Social work continues to face threats to its funding and educational curriculums. In various forums, I have been able to refer to this project research findings from ES/H023402/1 funded by RDI/ESRC. The published documentation of the impact of the funded research to support research activities for mid career social workers, and two special edited research journal issues which reported the results of this ESRC project in 2012 and 13, have had a much more significant impact on the profession as well as on students as well as on the public, than we might have anticipated. Through the APSW Association of Professors of Social Work and the Research Division of SWEC (Social Work in Education), I have been able to promote this research project, and suggest policies and strategies for HEI. I wish that we could actually put the publications into open access for everyone to read.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014,2015,2016