Social work is a profession that is increasingly involved with issues which have a global dimension. This Handbook tackles the global/local aspect of social work in its various forms and interrogates the key concerns that societies are facing through an international lens. The contributors show that, with an appreciation of commonalities and differences, local practices and appropriate forms of international activity can be better developed.

Social Work in Europe

Social work in Europe
DarjaZaviršek and SusanLawrence

Introduction

At different points in history the geopolitical boundaries of Europe bordering Africa, Asia and the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans have shifted, variously including and excluding different nation states. The two most prominent of Europe's institutions define Europe differently, the European Union (EU) having 27 member states (Europa, 2011) (with a population of 495 million inhabitants), whilst the Council of Europe (representing over 800 million people) counts 47 member countries covering all countries in the continent (with the exception of Belarus) (Council of Europe, 2010).

Lyons and Huegler (2010) describe Europe's geographical spread as stretching from the Nordic and Baltic countries in the Northwest, encompassing Russia in the Northeast, and in the Southwest including the Iberian Peninsula, and ...

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