2012‐2017 STRATEGIC PLAN

The Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR), founded in 1993, is a non‐profit, professional membership organization. SSWR supports social workers, social welfare professionals, social work students, social work faculty and researchers in related fields.

During the period from September 2011 to April, 2012, the SSWR Board engaged in a planning process. This process involved public meetings at the January, 2012 Annual Conference, and additional meetings with the leaders of the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare (AASWSW), Association of Baccalaureate Social Work Program Directors (BPD), Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), Group for the Advancement of Doctoral Education in Social Work (GADE), National Association of Deans and Directors (NADD), National Association of Social Workers (NASW), and St. Louis Group for Excellence in Social Work Research and Education (St. Louis Group). Revisions of the existing visions and missions and Strategic Initiatives were circulated to the Board, and their revisions were incorporated into a document approved at the April, 2012 Board meeting.

VISION

The Society for Social Work and Research advances, disseminates, and translates research that addresses issues of social work practice and policy and promotes a diverse, just, and equitable society.

MISSION

The Society:

  1. encourages the design, implementation and dissemination of rigorous research that enhances knowledge about critical social work practice and social policy problems and advances social welfare practices and programs;
  2. fosters a trans‐disciplinary inter‐professional support network of investigators conducting research on social work practice and social policy in the United States and around the world;
  3. provides learning opportunities to improve the conduct of social work‐relevant research and its application;
  4. promotes practices and policies grounded in an evidence‐base;
  5. supports increased research funding and training programs for social work researchers;
  6. provides formal recognition of significant contributions to social work‐relevant research; and
  7. seeks active partnerships with other social work and research‐related organizations to accomplish all of the above.

Strategic Goals and Tactics, 2012‐2017

Goal 1: Encourages the design, implementation and dissemination of rigorous research that enhances knowledge about critical social work practice and social policy problems and advances social welfare practices and programs;
Tactics 1:
a. Continue mounting annual conference based on rigorously reviewed papers and symposia

b. Continue support and development of the Journal of the Society for Social Work and Research (JSSWR)

c. Increase number of conferences, institutes and trainings occurring outside annual conference

d. Increase dissemination of conferences, institutes and trainings conveyed through podcasts and webcasts

Goal 2: Fosters a trans‐disciplinary inter‐professional support network of investigators conducting research on social work practice and social policy in the United States and around the world.
Tactics 2:

a. Continue conference networking opportunities through conference receptions, special interest groups (SIGs), special interest panels such as doctoral student lunch panel, midcareer, race/ethnicity

b. Increase conference networking opportunities, e.g., through “Meet the Scientist” roundtables

c. Increase number of networking opportunities available through social media, online consultation networks, and virtual collaboration platforms

d. Recruit members and participants from other countries and other disciplines

Goal 3: Provides learning opportunities to improve the conduct of social work-relevant research and its application.
Tactics 3:

a. Continue advanced methods training at conference

b. Increase opportunities outside of conference for advanced methods training through support for summer institutes, mini‐conferences and workshops

c. Increase proportion of SSWR membership who learn through involvement in organization (through abstract reviewing, journal reviewing, cluster chairing, award reviewing, Board committee membership)

Goal 4: Promotes practices and policies grounded in an evidence‐base.
Tactics 4:

a. Increase opportunities at annual conference or outside conference to promote the translation of research into policy/practice

b. Collaborate with National Association of Social Workers (NASW) to develop conference events or extra‐conference symposia, institutes or workshops to disseminate research for practitioners.

Goal 5: Supports increased funding for research and training programs for social work researchers.
Tactics 5:

a. Continue supporting work of National Research Capacity Building Initiative (NRCBI) b. Identify strategies to expand investment in advocacy for research funding in social work

Goal 6: Provides formal recognition of significant contributions to social work-relevant research.
Tactics 6:

a. Continue conference awards, specifically Doctoral Fellows, Outstanding Social Work Doctoral Dissertation, Deborah K. Padgett Early Career Achievement, Excellence in Research and Distinguished Career Achievement awards

b. Increase awards, in particular, create SSWR Fellows program to recognize continued, active participation of mid‐career and senior scientists

Goal 7: Seeks active partnerships with other social work and research‐related organizations to accomplish all of the above.
Tactics 7:

a. Continue to coordinate NRCBI activities with Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) and NASW advocacy activities, e.g. through the Action Network for Social Work Education and Research (ANSWER) Coalition

b. Continue the Association of Baccalaureate Social Work Program Directors (BPD)‐SSWR collaboration and CSWE‐SSWR collaboration with annual workshop presentations at BPD annual meetings and CSWE Annual Program Meeting (APM)

c. Seek collaboration with Group for the Advancement of Doctoral Education in Social Work (GADE) in planning doctoral student panel at SSWR conference.

d. Continue collaborations with private foundations, e.g. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation New Connections Program (for mid‐career scholars) and seek new ones.

[Download PDF SSWR 2012-2017 Strategic Plan]