Groupwork in Social Work Education, Practice and Research: Being and Joining Together


Conveners: Carol S. Cohen, Sagrario Segado Sanchez-Cabezudo and Linda Ducca Cisneros   EASSW-UNAFORIS 2017 European Conference 29 June 2017, Paris, France.  Click Here for more information: Report 2017 July Workshop at the EASSW Paris France

Session Abstract

Group participation appears central to human experience,

well-being and the promotion of social justice. However,

while the power of groupwork is indisputable, social work

educators and practitioners identify critical reductions in the

quality and scope of groupwork education, training and

services. Groupworkers rarely have opportunities to join

across borders to talk about successful approaches and

challenges they encounter.

This session’s purpose is to:

– Bring us together to share experiences and research;

– Develop strategies to strengthen groupwork in social

work education.

Resumen de la sesión

La participación grupal es central a la experiencia humana,

al bienestar y a la promoción de la justicia social. Sin

embargo, aunque el poder del trabajo grupal no se discuta,

profesores y profesionales del trabajo social identifican una

disminución de la calidad en el alcance de la educación, la

formación y los servicios de trabajo grupal.Las trabajadoras

de grupo, tienen pocas oportunidades para compartir, más

allá de las fronteras, los enfoques exitosos y desafios con

los que se encuentran.

El propósito de la sesión es:

– Unirnos para compartir experiencias e


– Desarrollar estrategias para fortalecer el trabajo

grupal en la formación en trabajo social.

Proposed Session Outline

• Welcome and Introduction to Our Session Today

• Introductions by Participants (Please Sign the Attendance Roster)

– Names, affiliations, and share a groupwork highlight

• Discussion of Groupwork Opportunities and Challenges

– Issues we face in our practice and education in groupwork

• Building and Sustaining our Connections

– Networking strategies for communication

– Resource sharing

– Research, practice and teaching collaborations

– Planning for 2018 World Conference in Dublin, Ireland and

other conferences and venues.

• Closing and Next Steps (Time For Our Photo)

– How did we come together today?

– What are our next steps for moving forward?

Propuesta de sesión

• Bienvenida y presentaciones de la sesión de hoy.

• Presentaciones de los participantes (Por favor firmar la lista)

– Nombre, institución, y compartir algún aspecto importante de grupos.

• Discusión acerca de las oportunidades y desafíos del trabajo


– Cuestiones a las que nos enfrentamos en la práctica y en la formación

en trabajo grupal.

• Crear y mantener conexiones.

– Estrategias de redes para la comunicación

– Intercambio de recursos.

– Colaboraciones en la investigación, la enseñanza y la práctica.

– Planificar la Conferencia Mundial en Dublin (2018, asi como otras

conferencias y eventos.

• Cierre y próximos pasos (Hora para nuestra foto)

– ¿Cómo fue la reunión de hoy?

– ¿Cuáles son los siguientes pasos para seguir adelante?

What are we Doing? How do we Connect?

As we share experiences and discuss local and

international perspectives on group work in social

work and social development:

• Are there themes emerging from our discussion?

• What opportunities and challenges appear in group

work across geographic boundaries and fields of


How Can We Support and Sustain our

Work Together?

• Are there emerging collaborations and ways to

sustain participants’ connections after the session?

• Are there possible resources and linkage with

existing networks that can be identified and


• Are there opportunities for partnerships in

education, practice and research?

Moving Forward with Group Work: How

Will Our Work Today Inform Our Future


• How can we summarize workshop content,

commitments, and next steps going forward?

• Can we identify possible venues for continuing

discussion, including upcoming conferences?

Upcoming Conferences

• International Association for Social Work with Groups

(IASWG): June 2018, Kruger National Park, South Africa:

• International Association for Social Work with Groups

(IASWG): June 2019, New York City, US:

• IFSW, IASSW, ICSW Joint World Conference on Social

Work, Eduation and Social Development July 2018, Dublin,


• IASWG Group Work Camps 2017, Lake Geneva, Wisconsin,

USA AND Quebec, Canada:





History of This Type of Session

Since 2004, similar sessions have been convened by

social work educators who are affiliated with the

International Association for Social Work with Groups


Previous Interest Groups included discussion of ways

to enhance organizational and educational support for

groupwork, explorations of cross-national and crosscultural

practice and education, and development of

issue focused teams.

International research partnerships, including some

presenting at IFSW, IASSW, IASWG and EASSW

conferences, were incubated through Special Interest

Group on Groupwork conversations.

Adelaide, Australia

(World Conference 2004)

Adelaide 2004

Munich, Germany (IFSW) 2006

Durban, South Africa

(World Conference 2008)

Chicago, 2009 – Global Groupwork Project’s

partners were invited as the Plenary Speakers

at the International Symposium of the IASWG

Stockholm, Sweden

(World Conference 2014)

Melbourne, 2016

Convened by Carol S. Cohen (United States), Sharima Ruwaida Abbas

(Malaysia), and Carol Irizarry (Australia), over 30 Joint World Conference

attendees participated in a Special Interest Group on Groupwork .

Participants from: Australia, Austria, Canada/Quebec, China, Hong Kong,

Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Nepal, New Zealand, South Africa,

United Kingdom, United States, and Vietnam.

Additional Special Interests

Group in Social Groupwork

• Parma, Italy (European Association of

Schools of Social Work), 2007

• Bonn, Germany (United Nations NGO DPI

Conference), 2011

• Seoul Korea (Social Work and Social

Development Conference), 2016

Expanding Connections

International Association for Social Work

with Groups (IASWG):

IASWG Commission on Social Work

Education in Groups (Contact: Co-Chair,

Carol Cohen):

Global Group Work Project:


Thank You!!

We look forward to our continuing work together

as groupwork practioners, educators and

scholars, and most of all to expand benefits of

effective group participation by members and

communities internationally.

Carol Cohen:

Sarario Segado Sanchez-Cabezudo:

Linda Ducca Cisneros:


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