Risk, in one form or another, is arguably the major issue with which contemporary social work is grappling. Not only must social work practitioners work with risk, and assess and intervene to reduce it, but social work agencies must respond to and manage it, while social work research and education must produce and enable development of the knowledge and skills required to do so. My intention in writing this book is to offer a comprehensive overview of, and original contribution to, debates regarding if, how and why this focus on risk is impacting on theory and practice within social work. Whatever their particular practice setting, increasingly practitioners find that assessing and managing risk is at the forefront of their role. However, the occupational groups concerned, and the agencies they represent, have established traditions, cultures and methods, as well as underpinning ideals and values, which are not necessarily straightforwardly compatible with the logic of risk. Tensions have therefore arisen in which unease about the degree of fit between new responsibilities and established skills, knowledge and ways of doing things is evident.
KeywordsSocial Work Service User Governing Risk Social Work Practice Contemporary Practice
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