Amy Shackelford (JYU – Jyväskylä University)


Topic: Expanding the eco-social approach to social work: Building power within ourselves, communities, and institutions

Thematic area: Green Social Work

Language: English 


Social work as a practice is traditionally rooted in addressing social and economic inequities, often with little or no incorporation of the environmental justice issues facing the modern world (Boetto, 2019).
Current social work literature reflects the emergence of discourse around environmental, economic, and social justice concerns with clear critiques of the current modernist systems that inform social interventions.
Contributing to the growing social work discourse highlighting the urgency of climate change, this workshop will focus on presenting the eco-social approach to social work while posing the importance of examining how we move through and within institutions. While the eco-social approach presents key concepts for social work practice to address the three pillars of a sustainable transition: economic, environmental, and social; little research exists to demonstrate the interpersonal and practical applications of the model.
This workshop seeks to co-create with the audience “what is eco-social power?” while presenting practical ways to implement concepts of coalition building, transdisciplinary approaches, and challenges power structures through empirical based case studies from the current PhD research project, as well as the process of radical self-discovery, relationship building and community organizing for social workers.