53 Int'l Soc. Work 5 (2010)

handle is hein.journals/intsocwk53 and id is 1 raw text is: 



Editorial


                                                       International SocialWork
                                                                 53(I) 5-7
Editorial                                                ŠThe Author(s) 2010
                                               Reprints and permission: http://www.
                                               sagepub.co.ul/journalsPermission.nav
                                                 DOI: 10.1177/0020872809355102
                                                        http://isw.sagepub.com
                                                              OSAGE

As  new  Co-Editors  for International Social Work  we  are delighted to
contribute our first editorial. We are deeply committed to the journal and to
the development  of theory, research and practice in international social
work. We  wish to mark formally the tremendous contribution of the previ-
ous Editor, Dr. Karen Lyons, under  whose  guidance the journal has pro-
gressed significantly. We shall build on Karen's dedicated work and hope to
add to the international standing of the journal, its impact factor, the diver-
sity of its focus and its relevance to policy and practice internationally. With
its long, proud history, embedded in the support of JASSW, ICSW,  IFSW,
and in collaboration with our publishers SAGE, we believe that the journal
can increasingly represent international excellence in social work research,
policy and practice and act as a forum to respond to some of the key chal-
lenges currently facing social work across the globe.
   Amongst  the first of these is the controversy around the definition of
international social work, with views ranging from how to define the phrase
to the accusation that it provides a vehicle for new forms of western coloni-
zation. The practice of locality specific social work within a globalizing
world  (Dominelli, 2004) is a highly complex  endeavour,  given that the
international and the local both shape, and are shaped by, the other. Such
definitional debates raise profound questions about the distribution of the
world's resources, poverty and the internationalization of social problems
whereby  difficulties that arise in one specific part of the globe carry ramifi-
cations for others, for example, trafficking in human beings, organized
crime  in the arms and drug  trades, child abductions that cross borders,
armed  conflicts and migratory movements.  Globalizing  forces challenge
practitioners' understandings of social issues and require them to transcend
borders in order to enhance wellbeing by connecting seemingly  unrelated
global events like climate change with specific local practice issues.
   Alongside the forces of globalization lies the movement to 'indigenize'
social work, rooted in the need for social work educators and practitioners
to promote the development of local theories and forms of practice that are
based on the specific traditions and customs of indigenous and aboriginal

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