- New social work journal a platform for authors from the Asia-Pacific region and southern countries
- Journal will examine social development work occurring in the Asia-Pacific
- Aims to provide a voice for the grassroots-level community and social development practitioners
A Charles Sturt University (CSU) social work academic has conceptualised and guided the development and publication of a new international journal of social work with a focus on the Asia-Pacific.
CSU Professor of Social Work, Manohar Pawar, is founding editor-in-chief of the International Journal of
Community and Social Development. The first issue was published Monday 4 March 2019.
Pawar teaches and researches in the CSU School of Humanities and Social
Sciences, is a member of the CSU Institute for Land, Water and
Society (ILWS), and is President of the International Consortium for Social
In his inaugural editorial Professor Pawar said that the journal is committed to providing a voice for the grassroots-level community and social development practitioners by sharing their experiences, knowledge and skills.
“There is a clear gap in the availability of such journals in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond, in the southern world,” he said.
“Thus, I hope this journal will give a voice to authors not only from the Asia-Pacific region but also from southern countries, and authors from any part of the world working or writing on community and social development in those countries.”
“The journal is also committed to publishing issues analysed at local-level communities.
“Most importantly, I have a dream of changing the journal publishing culture, generally. In particular, I would like to see a radical change in the peer review process of journal articles.”
Professor Pawar also offered a few simple tips to authors to facilitate their writing and publishing in this journal.
“Firstly, as authors and writers, I would like them to think positively, because positive thinking helps people to write better,” Professor Pawar said.
“Second, and most importantly, I ask them to write what they think, just not what others say or have written. Contribution of their own thinking is important in their writing, as well, of course, they need to build it on others’ writing.
“Thirdly, they should learn to respect ideas, because when you respect ideas, you quickly learn to generate your own ideas.”
Professor Pawar stressed that there is a lot of exciting and inspiring community and social development work occurring in the Asia-Pacific.
“The southern countries generally, which is undertaken by professional social / community / development workers and professionally untrained workers as well.
“However, such pieces of work, and knowledge and skills related to such work, are mostly hidden and rarely covered in the existing journals. There is a clear need for a journal to capture this valuable work and share it with the world.”
What’s in the first
issue of the International Journal of
Community and Social Development?:
There are five articles and five book reviews that are sequenced following a thematic logic. The first two articles are general in nature without focusing on any particular target population group.
The first article (Pawar) focuses on social work and policy practice and the necessity of political engagement.
The second article (Narayan) posits a practice model of ‘culturally dynamic partnerships’, which overcomes earlier shortcomings and provides a framework for inclusive and egalitarian inter-cultural interactions in an empowering way.
The third and the fourth articles explore Aboriginal issues, arguing that Indigenous peoples’ conditions all over the world leave much to be desired, despite the UN declaration on their rights and positive discrimination policies and programs in many countries. Why are the changes and development so slow?
One article (Mendes) proposes an alternative bottom-up community development process that addresses the voices and felt needs of Aboriginal people.
The fourth article (Sarkar and Singha) looks at the health situation of ‘Santal’ tribes in India. It examines educational, social, economic and cultural factors to explore how they influence health-seeking behaviour.
The last article (Nahar and Pillai) examines the differences in the level of child stunting between boys and girls in India. The authors suggest to focus on women’s education and improving sanitation to close the stunting gap.There are also five book reviews relating to ecological, socio-economic and political futures, social work, poverty, refugees, and digital culture.