International Issues

The International Issues committee recommends policies and practices to enable IASWG to be a truly international organisation. This is about ensuring that the organisation works in ways that respect diverse ways of doing things and understands what is needed to be inclusive of difference. As the number of members and new chapters from different parts of the globe increases, so does the need to be welcoming and responsive to different needs.

In particular, language and cultural differences need to be accommodated and celebrated within the organisation in order for internationalism to thrive. The International Affairs Committee considers practical ways that IASWG can put these principles into daily practice. The Co-chairs of the Committee on International Issues are Mark Doel and Lorrie Gardella. 

Current committee activities:

  • Language – the committee is helping to ensure that materials are translated into the main languages used by IASWG members;
  • Accessibility – the committee considers ways in which IASWG meetings and symposia can be inclusive, so that all those who are present are enabled to participate;
  • Economic justice – IASWG recognises that access to its activities can be limited by economic differences (both within and across societies): this reflects the broader economic disadvantage across the world. This committee considers how bursaries and other mechanisms of redistribution can be used to begin to redress these inequalities;
  • Diversity – to encourage policies and practices that further diversity within the organisation. This includes diversity within countries as well as across countries –  Internationalim is not just about relations between people from different countries, but addressing the inequalities within societies.
  • Publications – the academic conventions of many journals are excluding of many groups such as practitioners, service users and those ‘not in the know’. Academic knowledge is privileged in ways that exclude alternatives like ‘street knowledge’ and ‘practice knowledge’ that IASWG promotes. We are considering how to promote various ways of knowing through forms of publication “that don’t follow the rules”;
  • Communication across cultures – the importance of ‘reaching in’ as well as ‘reaching out’, so we need to find ways in which we can learn from the international community within IASWG, such as learning from other Chapters.

Committee Members:

  • Hilda Baar-Kooij 

  • Sam Benbow 

  • Ann Bergart 

  • Ginette Berteau 

  • Carol Cohen 

  • Mark Doel (Co-Chair) 

  • Linda Ducca 

  • Lorrie Gardella (Co-Chair)

  • Alexis Howard 

  • Roseprimevere Jacques 

  • Kristina Lind 

  • Poppy Masinga

  • Anna Nosko

  • Helena Onserud 

  • William Pelech 

  • Kristen Perron

  • Reineth Prinsloo 

  • Mamadou Seck 

  • Sari Skolnik 

  • Tanja Elisabeth Schmitz-Remberg 

  • Rasa Vejelyte 

  • Jorūnė Vyšniauskytė-Rimkienė

  • Christine Wilkins