A Science of Social Work? Response to John Brekke

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I take the opportunity provided by John Brekke’s (2012) article to respond to the general assumptions and approaches that may be brought when considering the question of a science of social work. I consider first, what should be our frames of reference, our communities of interest, or our boundaries of inclusion, for such a discussion? Second, in what sense, and at what level, is agreement on epistemology and ontology essential to the social work as science project? Third, in what sense do we think social work is or should be regarded as a discipline? I conclude that we should be bringing social work to bear on science just as persistently as we should do the converse. But the quest for a science of social work seems to me far less imaginative or far-reaching.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)524-26
Number of pages3
JournalResearch on Social Work Practice
Issue number5
Early online date1 Jul 2014
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2014


  • Social work
  • Science

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