20th Anniversary Comments from our Editorial Boards

Archives > Volume 20 (2023) > Issue 1 > Item 01

DOI: 10.55521/10-020-101

Stephen M. Marson, Ph.D., Editor

International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics • Volume 20(1), Copyright 2023 by IFSW

This text may be freely shared among individuals, but it may not be republished in any medium without express written consent from the authors and advance notification of IFSW.

I invited our Editorial Board, our Copy Editor Board, Policy Board, and our Book Review to comment on their experience and association with our journal. In the order I received them, here are their commentaries:

July 25, 2022, at 5:01 AM

I published my first peer-reviewed article in Volume 2 of the journal. I still remember well the professional workflow and the helpful feedback I received back then. Now, two decades later, I have the honor of being a member of the review board myself. The journal’s mission is more relevant than ever, and the fact that it has been open access for 20 years shows how far-sighted the editors were even then.

Stefan Borrmann, PhD
University of Applied Sciences Landshut, Germany


July 25, 2022, 7:16 AM

It has been my honor to serve on and support the publication of this journal for many years. Most recently, I have served as Editor of a Special Issue of this journal with a critical focus on Intercultural Relations. I have enjoyed further roles including serving on the Board of Copy Editors, Policy Review Board, and as a Book Reviewer. This journal brings new knowledge to the social work profession throughout the year to help advance our profession from an inclusive perspective. Looking forward to continued service.

Veronica L. Hardy, Ph.D.
University of North Carolina at Pembroke, USA


July 25, 2022, at 7:24 AM

What a pleasure to take a moment to reflect on my association with this journal. Since its beginning, I have had the opportunity to work with outstanding colleagues and scholars from around the world. The journal now finds itself truly having taken the international stage. Recent global health, political, and socio-economic developments have made its existence and presence more important than ever. One of the principal strengths and aims of this journal is not to present a singular set of ethical values for the social work field. Rather, it is to endorse and enjoy a diversity of approaches and perspectives. As our hopes and dreams evolve, may we rejoice in the effort to engage in meaningful and intellectually honest discourse.

Daniel Pollack, MSW, JD
Wurzweiler School of Social Work, USA


July 25, 2022, at 12:21 PM

For two decades, I have been privileged to serve on this journal’s editorial board. During this span of time, I have had a ringside seat to thoughtful manuscripts that demonstrate social workers’ ever-increasing understanding of complex ethical issues. The International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics has been a critically important lodestar in our profession’s determined efforts to examine its core values, complex ethical dilemmas, and ethics frameworks and protocols.

Frederic G. Reamer, Ph.D.
Rhode Island College, USA


July 25, 2022, at 12:58 PM

I am happy to be part of the esteemed journal and I am associated with it since couple of years now. I believe that being an educator in social work, we have lots of constructive roles to play to work for the development of social work pedagogical literature worldwide and also help to develop more of indigenous social work models, theories, skills through evidence-based practice in our own country for the sustainability of our profession. I am also advocating for the indigenous literature more than a decade in India through writing and practicing.

Our role is to practice, protect and progress of our profession worldwide and our journal is the best medium for it.

I will be always with you all to perform my given responsibility for the success of the journal and I am sure we will work together for that.

I am always there, Prof Steve.

Prof Sanjoy Roy
University of Delhi, India


July 25, 2022, at 3:11 PM

It has been my pleasure to be a volunteer from Canada with the (now) IJSWVE since 2014, first as a manuscript reviewer, then adding book reviewer to my interests.  I have also had the pleasure of publishing 2 pieces in the journal, one on ethical decision making and the other on the ethics of public apology (which is currently very fitting, given the Papal apology taking place today at Maskwacis, Alberta, Canada, my nearest Indigenous relations).  I am always learning from, and deeply appreciate,  the connections made with ethics practitioners and scholars from around this big, beautiful, troubled world.  Hai, Hai, Migwetch, Deepest gratitude,

Elaine Spencer, MSW,RSW,RCSW
Red Deer Polytechnic, Canada.


July 25, 2022, at 6:44 PM

I am so happy to have been associated with this journal. As a social worker and educator from the global south who recently immigrated to North America, there is a lot for me to learn about the politics of knowledge generation and marketing, even in social work. I see very closely the implications of colonization in every social work literature that I studied as a social work student, and in that, I taught in India and Canada. Association with this journal helps me to learn more about scholarly discussions and share my experience and knowledge from a non-American/European perspective. 

Baiju P. Vareed, Ph.D. RSW
MacEwan University, Canada


July 26, 2022, at 3:49 PM

My time on the editorial board of the Journal has been not only a key component of how I have given back to the profession of social work, but also a major contributor to my own continued development as a social worker and educator. The breadth of topics about which I’ve read during my tenure has expanded my knowledge and appreciation of the diversity in social work settings and has compelled me to examine what I thought were previously settled issues from different perspectives. Further, it was my relationship with the Journal that led me, with Steve Marson, to develop and edit the Routledge Handbook of Social Work Ethics and Values, featuring chapters from almost 80 social work scholars from six continents.

Dr. Robert McKinney, LICSW
University of Alabama


July 27, 2022, at 10:29 AM

I am grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to foster social work values and ethics through my association with our journal.  Over the past decades, ethics has become the increasingly central focus of my practice and studies.  While helping colleagues write and publish their ethics scholarship, I’ve found the journal’s international perspective valuable in my exploration of virtue ethics and in my own publications.  I also have valued the connection with the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB)’s work since my interests in social work licensure and regulation, supervision, child welfare, social justice, and cultural competence have been grounded in ethics as well.

Anthony A. Bibus III, PhD, LISW
Professor Emeritus


July 27, 2022, at 2:23 PM

Although I’ve only recently become involved with the International Journal of Social Work Ethics and Values, my position on the board enabled the strengthening of my writing skills as well as become familiar with the world of academic publishing. Being an undergraduate student, I am eternally grateful for this opportunity to share my opinions and drawings on such a large scale in such an early phase of my career. Apart from appointing me to a policy board position, Dr. Steve Marson has played a pivotal role in refining my skills and bolstering my confidence as a researcher. Without him, none of this journal would be possible.

Ray Mathew, MSW Candidate
The Ohio State University


July 27, 2022, at 5:22 PM

I knew the Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics was an idea that had to be put into action when Steve Marson and others approached me about it more than 20 years ago. I am honored to have been in on the ground floor of developing this ground-breaking publication as its first publisher from its inception in 2002 until 2012. Innovative in its electronic, open access format, it added a much-needed platform for the dissemination of research and writing on the core issues of the social work profession. Keep up the great work, IJSWVE!

Linda May Grobman, MSW, ACSW, LSW
White Hat Publications, USA


July 27, 2022, at 6:36 PM

My association with the IJSWVE started alongside my academic career – just over 20 years ago. It was the first journal that I was brave enough to reach out to and joined the editorial board as a voice from ‘down under Australia’. I had an article from my thesis on ethical dilemmas in social work published way back in 2005, and over 20 years have reviewed close to 100 manuscripts. In my teaching of ethics, I set articles from IJSWVE for students, promote the journal at every opportunity, and love being part of the bigger social work ethics educator community. It has been a highlight of my professional career and I look forward to continuing on my association as the journal moves into the international sphere

Donna McAuliffe, Ph.D.,
Griffith University, Australia


July 28, 2022, at 1:01 PM

During this modern age of massive social change, when the questions of moral values and ethical behaviors became so dynamic, The International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics introduced a platform where the important issues could be illustrated and examined. In a profession such as social work where action often takes place in ambiguous and ambivalent circumstance, the journal has brought light and dialogue that has helped its readers bring their own mind to our challenges. It has been one of my social work career’s highpoints to be involved with the fine colleagues who have worked so diligently on our editorial and copy boards. I celebrate this anniversary and look forward to IJSWVE continuing this important work.

Ogden Rogers, Ph.D., LICSW, ACSW

Professor Emeritus,
University of Wisconsin-River Falls, USA


July 30, 2022, at 8:02 AM

When I checked my records, I was surprised to find I have been associated with the Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics since 2009. Throughout my involvement it’s been a privilege to read the many contributions from professionals and students highly motivated to contribute to best practice and important debates. It’s been especially encouraging to see that in recent times the Journal has expanded its readership and contributors beyond the USA and global North in response to the urgent issues facing the world today.

Stephanie Maria Petrie, Ph.D., C.Q.S.W.
University of Central Lancashire, United Kingdom


July 31, 2022, at 5:55 PM

I think I have been associated with the IJSWVE almost since its inception, and I believe that I was the only non-USA member (I’m Canadian) for a few years. I retired from professional practice in 2015 but have maintained my link through the Journal. It has been a great experience connecting with so many people around the globe who all share an interest in ethical social work practice.

Alison MacDonald, Ph.D.
Retired, Canada


August 1, 2022, at 5:24 PM

I met Steve while serving on the exam committee for ASWB.  He was/is a force to be reckoned with as he decided that I needed to participate in the journal.  My efforts to convince him that I wasn’t interested, nor did I have the skill set to do fell on deaf ears.  Every reason for my not participating was met with a reason for me to do so.  When he agreed to offer me ongoing assistance if I would serve, I then said yes.

It has been a very interesting 20-year association with the journal.  Steve, true to his promise, has continued to be a source of support and computer help whenever I called upon to do so.  Thanks, Steve, for your honoring that promise as I do know you have/are involved in a myriad of projects.

 I have thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to read manuscripts submitted to the journal.  Many of them have been excellent and very thought-provoking.  As a clinician with many years of experience, my own practice has been enriched by what I learned from my review of the manuscripts.  It has been a very rewarding experience serving on the board and I am delighted that I agreed to do so.

Barbara L. Holzman, LCSW, 
Phoenix, AZ  


August 3, 2022, at 1:08 PM

When I joined the department of Sociology, Social Work and Criminal Justice, I was nervous, green, and intimidated by this new environment.  I had only worked in the non-profit public sector and my longtime dream was to become a member of academia at PSU.  

My impression, academia would be extremely exciting in which one was free and encouraged to explore, discuss, debate, and enjoy the camaraderie of fellow travelers (i.e., “There are those who seek knowledge for the sake of knowledge; that is Curiosity.” Bernard of Clairvaux, the last of Dante’s spiritual guides).

When I arrived at Pembroke State University (now the University of North Carolina at Pembroke), I was extremely excited … my dreams had materialized. I was so native! I found an entirely different world from the one created in my imagination.  I quickly realized I was a simpleton among giants, who were talented, very gifted, and ambitious.  I discovered academia was not nirvana!  It was not much different from other aspects of society; ambition many times became a driving force that belittled (in my opinion) the idealistic world I that imagined.  Many appeared to be focused on self and success, and often to the detriment of collegiality, cooperation, and an active concern for others. 

But met Steve Marson and Sherry Edwards.  Immediately, Steve and Sherry (both social workers by the way), took me under their wing and provided the calm, nurturing environment needed for potential success.  I had opportunities to engage and build potential collaborations as well as learn my new world.  I grew to know and appreciate many other talented individuals in my discipline (i.e., sociology) and it was through them, I became more confident, calm, and resolute in that I deserve to be here in this brave new world. 

So, what about IJSWV&E?  This was one vehicle which helped me appreciate the talent, sustaining values and desire to move to something better in service to the profession and society at large.  It provided an opportunity as well as a resource; the journal provided the vehicle and opportunity to keep up, appreciate, and revel in the contributions of others to the field, discipline and to humanity. 

I am fortunate and will always be proud of my minor association with The International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics

Ottis Murray, Ed.D.
University of North Carolina at Pembroke, USA


August 5, 2022, at 8:58 AM

This has been a fascinating trip and one that has enriched my professional life.  It has been fascinating to watch this grow and develop and how its filled a real need in the profession.  Steve’s leadership has been a vital ingredient in making it the success it is today.

John McNutt, Ph.D,

Professor Emeritus, University of Delaware


August 18, 2022, at 11:39 AM

In the face of all the challenges that are confronting our world today, I am privileged and honored to serve on the manuscript review board of The International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics. Our social work profession is needed now more than ever, and the increasing divisiveness, violence, incivility, and disregard for others that permeates our society also has a ripple effect on our profession. The complexities of the issues that we face as a global society will be best served by always remaining true to our profession’s six core values, namely: Service, Social Justice, Dignity and worth of the person, Importance of human relationships, Integrity, and Competence. The International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics is a reminder to address issues of profound impact on us all using a delicate balance of great heart combined with great thought. 

Nina Esaki, PhD, MSW, MBA

Springfield College ,USA


August 18, 2022, at 5:05 PM

La réflexion éthique fonde la pratique des Assistants de Service Social.

Depuis toujours, s’interroger, analyser, partager sont les moyens de donner du sens à notre pratique, de la guider.

Mon engagement tant auprès de l’ANAS (Association Nationale des Assistants de Service Social) qu’auprès des étudiants en travail social, stimule et enrichit ma réflexion.

Auparavant, je consultais peu la revue, je l’avoue. Mais après avoir intégré le Haut Conseil en Travail Social, développé les liens avec les instances internationales du travail social, cette opportunité de participer aux travaux de la Revue internationale des valeurs et de l’éthique du travail social a été pour moi un moyen de donner davantage de sens à mon engagement et à ma pratique.

Le travail social est fondé sur des valeurs trop souvent malmenées au profit d’objectifs chiffrés à atteindre (Nombre de contrat RSA, Durée moyenne de séjour…et bientôt SERAFIN). Aussi, promouvoir l’éclairage de l’ IJSWVE en France est un enjeu important car il permet de promouvoir la réflexion sur les enjeux du travail social du point de vue de l’éthique et des valeurs.

Parfois trop centré sur le faire, les dispositifs, l’urgence, par manque de temps, souvent, nous négligeons la prise de recul et l’analyse.

L’IJSWVE nous permet ce temps: prendre une distance nécessaire avec des problématiques que nous connaissons, nous aussi, mais qui sont analysées dans d’autres contextes, d’autres temporalités mais toujours en s’appuyant sur les valeurs du travail social.

Ainsi, cet éclairage international nous permet d’envisager autrement notre pratique et d’élaborer des réponses aux questions suivantes :

Quel est le sens de notre pratique ?

Quelle société contribuons-nous à construire ?

Que défendons-nous ?


Administratrice de l’ANAS
Numéro ADELI: 64 A0 1026 9
Association Nationale des Assistants de Service Social

++++ Translation from French ++++

August 18, 2022, at 5:05 PM

Ethical reflection underpins the practice of Social Service Assistants.

Questioning, analyzing, and sharing have always been the means of giving meaning to our practice, of guiding it.

My involvement both with ANAS (National Association of Social Service Assistants) and with social work students stimulates and enriches my thinking.  Previously, I hardly consulted the magazine, I admit. But after joining the Haut Conseil en Travail Social, developing links with international social work bodies, this opportunity to participate in the work of the International Journal of Values and Ethics of Social Work was for me a way of giving more meaning to my commitment and my practice.

Social work is based on values that are too often abused in favor of quantified objectives to be achieved (Number of RSA contracts, Average length of stay…and soon SERAFIN). Also, promoting the lighting of the IJSWVE in France is an important issue because it promotes reflection on the issues of social work from the point of view of ethics and values.

Sometimes too focused on doing, devices, urgency, for lack of time, we often neglect taking a step back and analysis.

The IJSWVE allows us this time: to take a necessary distance with issues that we know, too, but which are analyzed in other contexts, other temporalities but always based on the values of social work.

Thus, this international perspective allows us to consider our practice differently and to develop answers to the following questions:

What is the meaning of our practice?

What society are we helping to build?

What are we defending?

Administrator of ANAS
ADELI number: 64 A0 1026 9
National Association of Social Service Assistants


September 8, 2022, at 3:01 PM

Hi Steve,

It was around 8 years ago that I started copy editing for the journal. This was concurrent with the beginning of my graduate studies and was a great opportunity for me to learn more about academic writing. As I started editing, I quickly became interested in the subjects of the manuscripts, which often related closely to the methods in my academic discipline. Since that time, the journal has inspired me to pursue meaningful research projects that have real-world applications. I am so grateful for my experience, and excited to see what happens over the next 20 years.

Samantha Jo Cosgrove, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Technical Communication
University of North Texas


November 6, 2022, at 6:58 AM

It was an honour for me to be welcomed by the IJSWVE editorial board almost five years ago, after having considered the journal as a point of reference  for the debate on social work ethics and values from all over the world. It is this ample approach that Is special and appreciated. In becoming part of the board, I had the chance to appreciate the care, the openness and frankness of the debate that was prompted by the editor in chief in some particular occasion, thus nurturing sharing and sense of community.

With gratitude, I wish a successful journey of the journal 

Teresa Bertotti, Ph.D. 
Social Work, University of Trento Italy 


Sunday, November 6, 2022 at 11:21 AM

I am proud to say that in all my interactions with the International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics (and its predecessor), the Journal has lived up to the values that the profession of social work espouses.

  • Integrity: Ensuring transparent, honest, and fair reviews of manuscripts submitted for publication.
  • Accessibility: Offering free access to journal articles.
  • Social justice: Providing support to authors whose first language is not English to ensure that their submissions can be considered on equal footing and encouraging exploration of how to address social injustices in all their forms.
  • Human relationships: Facilitated important discussions among board members to consider key policy issues, trusting the power of the group to determine the best path forward for the journal.
  • Competence: Ensuring that people with relevant knowledge and experience review particular manuscripts and maintaining a high level of scholarship.
  • Dignity and worth of the person: Instilling policies that promote respect for the dignity and worth of all people, including the language and perspectives conveyed throughout the journal.

I truly look forward to the future of this journal, including continued creative explorations of ethical theory and practice.

Allan Barsky, JD, MSW, PhD
Professor, Florida Atlantic University


November 6, 2022, at 9:02 PM

It is with pride and pleasure to have served on the Editorial Board of The International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics since 2007 and to have worked with such a committed and accomplished group of colleagues. The journal has established itself as a premier resource for social workers. The increase in the scope and variability of manuscripts published over the years is reflective of the journal’s high caliber, growth, distinction, sustainability, and success!

Marian S. Harris, PhD, LICSW, ACSW
University of Washington Tacoma, USA


November 8, 2022, 11:45 AM

Having served as an Editorial Board member for more than half the journal’s life, I appreciate the scholarship, connection with accomplished co-editors, and the opportunity to promote the career-long study of social work ethics and values. The fact that Steve Marson, one of the founding co-editors, is North Carolina-based enhanced my excitement about participating.  The social work profession has an unprecedented opportunity to help our world acknowledge stark differences and maintain civility especially when we do not, will not, and cannot agree on specific positions. Ethics is an inherent component of social work practice, and I am grateful for the privilege of service.

Ravita T. Omabu Okafor, MSW, LCSW, North Carolina, USA


20th Anniversary Comments from the Publisher

Congratulations to the founders and people that have worked to support the International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics. Happy 20th anniversary. 

Social work has largely been built by volunteers who have shared their time and expertise in the interests of strengthening the profession locally, regionally and globally. Without such commitment there would not be an international social work profession. No-one else, no other body has acted or resourced the building of this worldwide profession, yet it is done because of significant contributions such as this Journal.

Social work ethics and values are now global, and each one of us in the profession can observe a practice setting in a country, culture and context, far from our own and say:

‘I know what a social worker is doing. She is supporting self-determination. Now she is recognising the strengths of others and examining how a person’s relationships support or hinder them. Now she is advocating for her employing service to become an environment that respects the dignity, rights and responsibilities of everyone’.

It is the values and ethics that are the glue that binds the profession. For many, if not all of us, they are a guide that helps us through complex challenges. They are more valuable than any single theory or model, as our profession’s values and ethics can be used as lens for understanding all the circumstances we encounter.

So, thank you to all who have contributed to the existence of this journal. It is an important place for the profession to test ethical ideas, a place to examine if and how the profession’s principles need to be amended or updated in this fast-changing world. Further, the Journal acts a reminder to all readers that social work is a principle-led profession.

Bravo to the editors, reviewers and contributors, happy 20th anniversary and IFSW looks forward to working with you in the decades to come.

Rory Truell, IFSW Secretary-General