Social workers writing for publication: The story of a practice and academic partnership

Gordon, Jean; Rixon, Andrew and Cooper, Barry (2017). Social workers writing for publication: The story of a practice and academic partnership. Practice: Social Work in Action, 29(3) pp. 219–235.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/09503153.2016.1215416

Abstract

This paper outlines the processes, outcomes and lessons learnt from a collaborative writing project undertaken as a partnership between academics at the Open University and eleven social work practitioners from a variety of social work settings across the UK. This partnership successfully co-produced a book of social work stories using a critical best practice approach (Cooper, Gordon and Rixon, 2015a), which describes and analyses the realities of everyday social work practice. In a context where there still appear to be many barriers to the involvement of practising social workers in research and writing, we conclude that the project's collaborative process facilitated the sharing of practitioner experience and expertise with the wider world. Drawing on lessons learned during the writing of the book, a number of practical ways of building on this initiative to support the development of practitioner writing are proposed.

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