Bringing key developments and debates together in a single volume, this book provides an authoritative guide for students and practitioners embarking on qualitative research in social work and related fields.
Frequently illustrated with contemporary and classic case examples from the authors’ own empirical research and from international published work, and with self-directed learning tasks, the book provides insight into the difficulties and complexities of carrying out research, as well as sharing ‘success’ stories from the field. Shaw and Holland have long experience of writing for practitioners and students and in making complex concepts accessible and readable, making this an ideal text for those engaging in qualitative social work research at any level.
Ian Shaw is a Professor of Social Work at the University of York and at the University of Aalborg.
Sally Holland is a Reader in Social Work at the School of Social Sciences in Cardiff University.
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About the Author
Dr. Ian Shaw is S R Nathan Professor of Social Work at National University of Singapore and Professor Emeritus at the University of York, England. He was the first chair of the European Social Work Research Association (ESWRA) and a founder editor of the journal Qualitative Social Work. He has authored almost 100 peer-reviewed papers, more than 20 books, 60 book chapters, and various research reports. He has written extensively in the journals on issues arising from the relationship between social work and sociology over the last century. His more recent books include Social Work Science (2016) and Research and the Social Work Picture (2018). He is pursuing a graduate programme in creative writing, which sits alongside his interests in gardening, his local church, volunteering in his village shop, playing badminton (badly), and Bob Dylan.
I am a Reader in Social Work in Cardiff University's School of Social Sciences, and a former social worker in the field of child and family social work. Previously I was a practitioner in the voluntary and statutory sectors. I have extensive experience of conducting qualitative research projects in social work and have investigated issues related to looked after children, assessment of parenting, family group conferences, child neglect, involving fathers and community safeguarding. I have used a range of qualitative methods to explore these topics, including participative research with children, ethnography, mobile methods, life history interviews and documentary analysis. I facilitate a research advisory group for young people who are care experienced and am deputy chair of my departmental research ethics committee. I am also the author of Child and Family Assessment in Social Work Practice (Sage, 2nd edition, 2011).
Table of Contents
What is Distinctive about Qualitative Social Work Research?Qualitative Research and the Social Work ContextResearching the Social Work FieldQualitative Methods in Social Work – a ReviewDoing Qualitative Social Work ResearchReviewing ResearchQualitative DesignsEthics in Qualitative ResearchAsking QuestionsTelling StoriesTraces and Deposits in Texts and DocumentsLiving in Place, Space and TimeAnticipating Analysis and Making Sense of Qualitative DataDoing Qualitative AnalysisThe Purposes of Qualitative Social Work ResearchResearching and Evaluating Interventions and OutcomesSocial JusticeQualitative Research and PracticeThe Consequences of Qualitative Research