Changes in the form of knowledge in social work: From the 'social' to the 'informational'?

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This paper examines the changing form of knowledge in social work over the past thirty years and its implications for theory and practice. In particular, it considers the impact of new systems related to a range of new information and communication technologies (ICTs) and the shift from a narrative to a database way of thinking and operating. In doing so, it attempts to identify a series of key challenges and questions which need to be considered in order to engage with the changes. In particular, it addresses how far social work is still primarily concerned with subjects and their social relationships and argues that social work now operates less on the terrain of the 'social' and more on the terrain of the 'informational'. Such changes have implications for the relationship between theory and practice in social work and the nature of 'social' work itself.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)253-269
Number of pages17
JournalBritish Journal of Social Work
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2008


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