Panel und Workshops

Hinweis: Für Panel 1 und Panel 3 stehen bei Bedarf eine Simultanübersetzung (Englisch > Deutsch und Deutsch > Englisch) zur Verfügung.

Panel 1: Anspruch und Realität

Vortragssprachen: Deutsch und Englisch; Simultanübersetzung steht bei Bedarf zur Verfügung

Elena Davydova (Pyatigorsk State University, Russia): Older people (60+) as a special social group in need of help amid the pandemic

Older people are discriminated amid the pandemic. Most of the people who got infected and died are senior citizens. There is a low level of social immunity and decreasing of quality of life among them amid the lockdown and pandemic.
We are going to talk about actions carried out by the government, local communities and individuals in the direction of social care for older people, and the ways of how and where to find new components that would increase the quality of life and level of social immunity.
We will mention digital technologies that are greatly used in social work and aimed at building equal position of older people in modern society, and how to provide equal opportunities in social welfare and social care. We are going to talk about offline and online means of communication and cooperation that are able to both debase and improve quality of life of older people.

Jan V. Wirth (AKAD University, Stuttgart): Soziale Arbeit in Deutschland – „So gehet hin in Ambivalenz“

Der Beitrag skizziert die wohlfahrtstaatlichen Strukturen der Sozialen Arbeit in Deutschland. Dabei zeigt sich eine starke staatliche bzw. politische Abhängigkeit von Trägern und Vereinen. Diese Abhängigkeit steht im Widerspruch zu den Zielen der Internationalen Sozialen Arbeit, die etwa auf sozialen Wandel abzielen.

Der Beitrag argumentiert erstens, dass genau die Verringerung dieser starken staatlichen und politischen Abhängigkeit Teil dieses sozialen Wandels sein muss. Symptomatisch für diesen Handlungsbedarf steht das durch die Soziologie aufgeworfene Problematik von Teilhabe bzw. Nicht-Teilhabe (Inklusion bzw. Exklusion).

Der Beitrag argumentiert zweitens, dass sich Soziale Arbeit in ihrer internationalen Ausrichtung und Professionalisierung nicht ausschließlich das Ziel „Inklusion“, sondern auch das Ziel „Exklusion“ auf die Fahnen schreiben sollte. Inklusion kann beispielsweise nicht das Ziel sein, wenn es darum geht, Menschen oder Familien in Inklusionsverhältnisse zu begleiten, die deren Sinnstiftung und Lebensentwürfen zuwider laufen.

Der Beitrag wird zur Plausibilisierung seiner Argumentationsstränge entsprechende Beispiele aus den Arbeitsformen und Handlungsfeldern der Sozialen Arbeit abliefern und zur Diskussion stellen.

Sebastian Sierra-Barra (Evangelische Hochschule Berlin): Posthumanismus als Anti-Rassismus? Überlegungen zu einem koevolutionären Verständnis in der Sozialen Arbeit

Abstract folgt

Panel 2: Ursachenbekämpfung oder Symptomlinderung

Vortragssprachen: Englisch

Hannah Reich (Hochschule Würzburg-Schweinfurt): International Social Work Acting in Crisis – attitude matters (AttiMa)

In today’s era of global crises, Social Work needs to expand its methodological repertoire and accordingly expand and adapt its work and teaching practices. In doing so, it is important to learn from the experiences of social workers in the South who have had to develop skills to respond appropriately to exceptional situations since the beginning of their practice. Considering the focus of social work on the excluded and marginalized, the difficult situation of many people on this planet is strongly reflected in the field of International Social Work. Social Work professionals face significant challenges in dealing with conflicting imperatives and uncertain contexts shaped by increasing economic disparities, environmental, economic, and health crises, as well as various forms of group-focused enmity and violent extremism. Even if International Social Work has to act in locally well anchored, it also acts in its professionalism in the light of universally valid maxims of action (Cox/Pawar 2013). This entails ethical dilemmas and challenges (Healy 2008: 239 ff). Also, it is important to be aware of global interconnectedness and interdependencies, including unequal power relations and unequal access to resources, in their concrete, local practice. It is not enough to learn theoretically the competence to deal with different systems of interpretation, but it must also be experienced practically (Tesoriero 2006).
Within the project AttiMa we aim at developing future needed competencies and transform International Social Work teaching practice by strengthening experience-based learning formats and participatory learning group learning processes, an approach which is coined “elicitive” (Lederach 1995) within the systemic conflict transformation scene or “emergent” within the Mindfulness Teaching practices (Santorelli 2019). The whole process had to be partly transferred into online realities, which created and creates new challenges, yet also very valuable opportunities. Although the project aims at a transformation of higher education structures – which have to change for constructive sustainable futures – it can still be depicted as working merely with the symptoms: the stress level of humans – or not?    

S.M. Sajid (Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi) & Christine Rehklau (University of Applied Sciences, Erfurt Germany): Global Response to a global problem: Myth and Reality

There has been all round growth and development around the World during the past few decades. However, development has not been fairly distributed  on the globe. Inequalities of income, differential access to basic amenities, prevalence of hunger, starvation, disease, discrimination, etc. continue to be prevalent in most of the countries.
The COVID 19 pandemic as a global crisis has exposed the vulnerabilities of the developed and less developed nations. Serious deficiencies in the basic health infrastructure, restricted access to the health facilities, non-availability of oxygen and lifesaving drugs, loss of livelihood , food insecurity has caused the greatest catastrophe in a century.
Being a global crisis the pandemic required a global response marked by active cooperation caring and generous attitude rather than a narrow nationalistic orientation to deal with the crisis. Less developed countries were left to fend for themselves with a skeleton of a health infrastructure, weak economies and poor political clouts. The protection and enforceability of  Article 28 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1948 referring to a social and international order in which the rights and freedoms set forth can be fully realized has not been felt more strongly. Similarly, the Article 22 and 25 required a universal applicability and enforcement particularly sharing support and resources with the less developed nations.

India being a fast growing economy has seen all-round development  during the past several decades but is found to be lacking by equitable distribution of the development benefits. Suicides of farmers, starvation deaths in some parts, lack of access to basic health, education and water resources to a large population is the other side of the story. According to various estimates, 1 % of the populations holds nearly 58 % of the national wealth. In Germany it became even more obvious that equal opportunities in regard to education is a distant dream. Moreover the effects on the health situation are very much dependent on the socio-economic status.
The present paper attempts to draw a comparison between India and Germany in terms of their socio-economic capabilities to address the pandemic related loses of humanity in the respective countries in view of honouring the human rights specifically Articles 22, 25, and 28 and with reference to the Global definition of social work which emphasised on promoting cohesiveness in the society.

Panel 3: Internationale Soziale Arbeit & Dekolonialisierung

Vortragssprachen: Deutsch und Englisch; Simultanübersetzung steht bei Bedarf zur Verfügung

Marelize Joubert (Sheffield Hallam University, UK) & Stephan Geyer (University of Pretoria, South Africa): In pursuit of decolonising social work research: a dialogue on Ubuntu among students from South Africa and England

The Global Agenda for Social Work and Social Development focuses on Ubuntu: Strengthening social solidarity and global connectivity during 2021 and 2022. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent on-line teaching and learning, a series of opportunities were created where final-year BSW students from the University of Pretoria (South Africa) and second-year MSW students from Sheffield Hallam University (England) shared their lived experiences during COVID-19 and ideas to decolonise social work research through, amongst others, Ubuntu as a research paradigm.

#Rhodesmustfall and #Feesmustfall brought South African students’ demand for an Afrocentric, decolonial and indigenous tertiary education pertinently to the attention of Higher Education Institutions. Traditionally teaching and learning practices in South Africa are deeply rooted in colonialism and imperialism because of the country’s history. The students’ call demands a new approach to teaching and learning which challenge both academic staff and students to decolonise the mind (Chilisa, 2020).

The “Why Is My Curriculum White?” campaign, founded at the University College London was a student movement in England aiming to encourage a broader diversity of course content in Higher Education. The movement aims to decolonise and critically challenge course content and perspectives offered through the accepted Western white canon of knowledge and is a result of colonialism (Peters, 2015).

A focus on Ubuntu, as research paradigm, serves as an example to decolonise typical (Western) social work research methodology on the African continent, while also articulating with an ongoing process in England which requires a consideration and  addressing how the values, norms, thinking, beliefs, and practices that frame the curriculum perpetuate westernised hegemony and position anything non-European as lesser, whilst considering the student journey in the context of decolonising practices and procedures.

This paper describes a case study where students from two countries reflected on integrating an Afro-sensed research methodology in social work (cf. Shokane & Masoga, 2021). More specifically the paper will deliberate on how an awareness of and sensitivity towards Ubuntu (cf. Seehawer, 2018; Van Breda, 2019), positionality, power, and representivity (cf. Merriam et al., 2001) could shape research practices in future to promote social solidarity between researchers and research participants.

Helmut Spitzer (FH Kärnten): Ubuntu – Afrikanischer Humanismus als Leitmotiv internationaler Sozialer Arbeit? Eine kritische Reflexion

Der internationale Berufsverband der Sozialen Arbeit (IFSW) rief 2021 die afrikanische Lebensphilosophie Ubuntu als Motto für globale Solidarität und Verbundenheit in Zeiten weltweiter Risiken und Krisen aus. In vielen Ländern der Welt wurde Ubuntu zum Leitmotiv am World Social Work Day und erhielt eine relative Bekanntheit außerhalb Afrikas. Doch wofür steht dieser Begriff überhaupt? Entspricht er tatsächlich der gängigen Lebenspraxis von Millionen Afrikaner*innen? Oder hat die Renaissance von Ubuntu im internationalen Kontext mehr mit eurozentrischem Wunschdenken als mit afrikanischen Realitäten zu tun? Und worin besteht die Relevanz für die Soziale Arbeit, zumal außerhalb des afrikanischen Kontinents?

Der oft als „afrikanischer Humanismus“ übersetzte Terminus Ubuntu, der in verschiedenen afrikanischen Kulturen und Sprachen vorkommt, steht für zwischenmenschliche Werte wie Respekt, Höflichkeit, Hilfsbereitschaft, Gastfreundschaft, Großzügigkeit und Vergebung. Er verortet das Individuum in einem größeren Ganzen, in der Community. Als latenter Moralkodex stellt er für viele Menschen eine wichtige Orientierungs- und Bewältigungskategorie im Alltagsleben und im Überlebenskampf dar. Aber Ubuntu ist keine Blaupause für ein harmonisches und friedliches Miteinander, sondern ein ambivalentes moralisches Korsett. Das zeigt sich beispielsweise in der Benachteiligung von Mädchen und Frauen, in ethnischen Konflikten oder der grassierenden Homophobie in vielen afrikanischen Ländern.

In einigen Ländern spielt Ubuntu eine wichtige Rolle in der Sozialarbeitspraxis. Auch für die internationale Soziale Arbeit können Konzepte aus dem Globalen Süden einen bereichernden Bezugsrahmen darstellen, vorausgesetzt, dass diese einer kritischen Reflexion unterzogen werden. Dazu gehört die Frage, ob es legitim ist, eine genuin afrikanische Epistemologie in einen westlich dominierten internationalen Kontext zu vereinnahmen. Die Integration von Ubuntu in den internationalen Diskurs kann als Chance für eine Öffnung gegenüber indigenem Wissen gedeutet werden, sie birgt aber auch die Gefahr einer sozialromantischen Verklärung und ideologischen Umdeutung solcher Wissenssysteme in sich.

Ubuntu hat vielleicht das Potenzial für eine universale Ethik menschlichen Zusammenlebens. Doch dafür braucht es globale Rahmenbedingungen für wahre Solidarität und spürbare soziale Gerechtigkeit. Wo bleibt Ubuntu, wenn die Menschen in Afrika bei den Covid-19-Impfungen wieder mal die letzten sind?

Günter J. Friesenhahn (Hochschule Koblenz): Europäische, internationale und transnationale Soziale Arbeit: Drei große Narrative und eine kleine Diskursanalyse.

Die Klärung des Gegenstandsbereiches Sozialer Arbeit im Kontext von Internationalisierung beinhaltet eine besondere Anforderung, da die Standards und Regeln der Diskursproduktion in verschiedenen Ländern durchaus unterschiedlich sind und unterschiedliche Denktraditionen zur Begründung von Konzepten und der Praxis Sozialer Arbeit herangezogen werden. Dies verweist auf die Notwendigkeit der Konturierung und der differenzierten Diskursanalyse europäischer, internationaler, und transnationaler Diskurslinien, die auch Überschneidungsbereiche aufweisen. Die Produktion und Transformation von Wissen, die zunehmend in globalen Arenen stattfindet, aber dabei die grundlegenden Kategorien Lokalität und Einbettung nicht aufgibt, muss reflektiert werden.

Der Blick auf Soziale Arbeit zeigt, dass wir es sowohl auf der Ebene der Disziplin als auch auf der Ebene der Praxis und ihren jeweiligen grenzüberschreitenden Diskursen und Aktivitäten mit  heterogenen, vielschichtigen, widerspenstigen,  kooperationssuchenden und  z.T. unverträglichen  Positionen zu tun haben. Die Vielfalt der historisch unterschiedlich entstandenen Erscheinungsformen, der terminologischen Ausformulierungen, der methodischen Schwerpunksetzungen und der Professionsverständnisse nehmen zu. Die terminologischen Unterschiede verbinden sich mit diversen Konzepten, Werten und Praktiken.

So verbinden sich z.B. mit internationaler Sozialer Arbeit die Vorstellungen von grenzüberschreitender Kooperation von Sozialarbeiterinnen oder die Arbeit in einer international arbeitenden NGO. Transnationale Soziale Arbeit unterstreicht, neue Lebensformen in plurilokalen Kontexten stärker zu fokussieren und macht auf die Begrenzungen des methodologischen Nationalismus aufmerksam. Europäische Soziale Arbeit ist eng verknüpft mit den Ideen eines Wohlfahrtsstaates, der zum einen umverteilend agiert und für Menschen in Problemlagen umfangreiche Hilfestellungen in institutionalisierter Form bereithält und bezieht sich auf typisch europäische Traditionen und „European Thinking“ , z.B. der Humanismus, die Aufklärung und die darin begründeten Hervorhebung von persönlicher Freiheit und sozialer Gleichheit. Akteurinnen in der Sozialen Arbeit müssen – so die Message der Global Definition of SW – die Verflechtungszusammenhänge (z.B. von global und lokal) und von unterschiedlichen Wissensformen (z.B. wissenschaftliches und indigenes Wissen) reflektieren und mit ihren Handlungsansprüchen und Handlungsanforderungen verknüpfen.

Panel 4: Postkoloniale Soziale Arbeit – Friend or Foe? Internationalization and Decolonization Processes in Social Work

Vortragssprachen: Englisch

Moderation: Tanja Kleibl (UAS Würzburg Schweinfurt)

The Panel reflects from a variety of perspectives on the complex and intertwined processes of decolonization and internationalization. Sandra Holtgreve, Petra Daňková and Tanja Kleibl present contributions of 20 minutes. Ndangwa Noyoo offers reflection on the contributions from a perspective of a South African social work and social policy researcher who has written extensively on indigenous knowledge systems and has recently served as a guest professor at the UAS Würzburg-Schweinfurt. Subsequently, moderated discussion follows.

Petra Daňková & Tanja Kleibl (UAS Würzburg-Schweinfurt): Social Work education and research in the context of postcolonial perspectives

Rural-to-urban migration in connection to urbanization, the increasing demand for women’s rights as well as the emergence of welfare states were some of the formative processes in the early history of social work as a profession and as an academic discipline in Europe. The establishment of social work in many countries outside of the “West” took place in connection with violent social transformations and intense international entanglements. We can call to mind the history of social work development in colonized African regions, or more recent developments of social work in the wake of the Vietnam war, the post-communist “transition” in Eastern Europe or the conflict in Kosovo. Although each unique, in all these contexts internationalization came hand in hand with dominant Western approaches that paid only limited attention to – or even systematically eliminated local ways of social support. The efforts to decolonize social work are under way in all these contexts albeit with different intensity and visibility.

Based on this historical background, our contribution reflects the topic of postcolonial social work alongside two evolving dynamics: 1) the internationalization and decolonization of social work education in Germany and 2) transnational developments in Germany and Nigeria as two locations that are bound together by migratory movements (predominantly Nigeria to Germany) and the externalization of migration management policies (predominantly German and EU engagement in Nigeria via the Trust Fund for Africa and bilateral agreements).

In connection to international migration, Social Work stands perennially in the tension between co-facilitating social transformation and stabilizing the status-quo as a “contractor” of the state and/or of international regimes. Exploring recent developments in social work education allows us to trace how the so-called “migration crisis” in Europe (from 2014/15) and the subsequent EU containment and border externalization policies targeting countries of “origin” are entangled with increased interest in the field of migration as field of action of social work research and practice.

What role do internationalization and decolonization of social work play in the midst of the fluctuating interest at the intersection of migration and social work? What possibilities and challenges produce these processes specifically in development of a “transnational” social work to reflect the transnational nature of many migratory processes?

Sandra Holtgreve (RheinMain University of Applied Sciences; Bielefeld University): Internationalization and decolonization – different means to the same end?

Internationalization and decolonization are at the heart of social work today. Yet both notions are highly contested, and their relation sometimes appears contradictory. Internationalization, on the one hand, emphasizes the idea of extending partnerships and fostering transnational encounters. In that, it often carries an atmosphere of cosmopolitanism. Decolonization, on the other, puts more stress on locality and uniqueness, the reappraisal of diversity, the autonomy of knowledges, and the critique of power imbalances in international encounters. Decolonial arguments tend to articulate reservations about internationalization, sometimes even an outright rejection of international cooperation. At the same time, the fact that social work engages with decolonization is itself largely an outcome of the internationalization of sciences.

How exactly do internationalization and decolonization relate to each other? What do their shared features and tensions reveal? Are they compatible; are they different means to the same end? Can they be seen separately from each other? In this talk, I will characterize the relationship of internationalization and decolonization as two complementary processes in the current social work landscape, where one cannot exist without the other. Instead of seeing internationalization and decolonization as disconnected or competing approaches, I attempt to bring to the fore their co-dependencies as parts of one single process. I offer a conceptual reflection on how the two approaches of different backgrounds unavoidably interact, influence one another, and converge in their shared concerns about shaping encounters. The reflections emerge out of my research on the ‘globalization of decolonial thought’ and current experiences as a research fellow for internationalization at my Faculty at RheinMain University of Applies Sciences.

Ndangwa Noyoo (University of Cape Town, Department of Social Development): After Rhodes Must Fall and Fees Must Fall: What next for decolonising social work in South Africa?

In 2015, the University of Cape Town (UCT) erupted in a student protest that objected to the continued presence on campus grounds of the statue of the arch imperialist and colonial architect, Cecil John Rhodes. The students’ displeasure about this statue on UCT grounds coalesced into what came to be known as the Rhodes Must Fall movement. Initially, the university authorities had resisted the students’ efforts to have the statue removed from UCT. Eventually, the students prevailed and the statue was removed from campus grounds. Before these protests could dissipate, a nation-wide protest erupted, with all the universities of South Africa participating in it. In this instance, students were united against the increase of tuition fees for the academic year of 2016. As the protests continued, demands were made for “free and decolonised” education. These protests shook universities, especially, the former white universities, to their core as such upheavals had never been experienced by the former in the post-apartheid era.
These protests continued until 2017, albeit in a muted form. However, since then, sporadic protests have erupted almost at the beginning of every academic year. After almost being thrown into a tailspin, many universities responded with a flurry of “decolonisation” commissions, research and various initiatives aimed at responding to the students’ grievances. Similarly, social work departments across the country embarked upon “decolonising” their curricula. Arguably, these efforts were superficial and did not address the fundamental deficits in social work education and training. It can be argued that social work education has not been fully transformed 27 years after democracy.
This paper critically analyses the decolonisation of social work curricula in South Africa. 

Workshop 1: Pro Action Café – The Breakthrough of the Social

Eva Grigori & Michaela Moser (FH St. Pölten), „Dubrovnik Group“

Vortragssprache: Englisch

Facing an increasing brutalisation of society that goes hand in hand with the destruction of welfare systems, encountering old and new forms of structural and concrete acts of violence, we set out to explore how we can contribute to re-emphasise and revive the critical tradition of social work, and reinforce solidarity with those who are oppressed, atrisk and vulnerable.

After decades of a diminished social, in a neo-liberal conjuncture that has privileged the economic and neglected, marginalised, and thoroughly downgraded the social dimension as the basis of our existence, there is an urgent need for the breakthrough of a brand-new social.

Social work has not only to be a part of this breakthrough, and would be strengthened by this emergence, enabled to survive as an essential feature of society –it also needs to play an active role in bringing it to fruition.

In order to do so we want to reflect, discuss and plan the future social work as a community-oriented, relationship-based activity that goes far beyond academia, and build strong and transnational coalitions of workers, academics, service users, movement activists, trades’ unionists and everybody else working towards social justice.

Workshop 2:

Ursula Hemetek & Alois Huber (FH St. Pölten)

Vortragssprache: Deutsch

Wer bin ich in der interprofessionellen Zusammenarbeit – und wie kann ich dadurch Klientinnen noch besser versorgen?
Diese Frage stellen sich Studierende und Lehrende der FH St. Pölten gemeinsam mit Professionistinnen aus Moorheilbad Harbach (Beste Gesundheit), Klient*innen und europäischen Partnern (

Das Projekt soll sie dabei unterstützen, interprofessionelle, personenzentrierte Fähigkeiten zu entwickeln. Langfristig soll es die Grundlage für eine reibungslos organisierte, curriculäre Verankerung und Vernetzung zwischen den Studiengängen Diätologie, Pflege, Physiotherapie und Soziale Arbeit der FH St. Pölten ebnen.

Am Ende des Projekts stehen folgende Ergebnisse:
* eine Reihe von grundlegenden und fortgeschrittenen Modulen zur Funktionsfähigkeit, (gemäß der Internationalen Klassifikation der WHO für Funktionsfähigkeit, Behinderung und Gesundheit, ICF)
* Ein Prozess-Guide für Lehrende inklusive (Bewertungs-)Instrumente zur Ausbildung interprofessioneller Fähigkeiten und administrativer Checkliste
* Lernmaterialien, von theoretischen Modulen bis hin zu Richtlinien für die Einrichtung und den Betrieb einer von Studierenden betriebenen interprofessionellen Lernabteilung in einem Rehabilitationszentrum

Alle Ergebnisse werden auf der INPRO-Website veröffentlicht und für die Umsetzung in
der tertiären Bildung und im lebenslangen Lernen in der Praxis des Gesundheitswesens zur
Verfügung gestellt.