Episode 2 of the husITa Podcast

An Interview with Dr. Laura Nissen discussing Social Work & the Future in a Post COVID-19 World

Author: Jimmy A. Young, PhD

In this episode of the Podcast, I discuss with Futurism and Foresight Practice with Dr. Laura Nissen. She published “Social Work and the Future in a Post-Covid 19 World: A Foresight Lens and a Call to Action for the Profession” in the Journal of Technology in Human Services  back in July of 2020. Borrowing from the abstract:

This paper explores what being more future facing might look like for social workers/educators and introduces foresight as a useful and urgently needed framework for the profession. Contemporary realities like Covid-19 and uprisings associated with long-standing racial violence bring added relevance to the need to apply new ways of thinking, use new practical techniques, and strengthen a collective ability to see beyond the current cannon of ideas and approaches. These additions to the social work toolbox are much needed in a world full of inequity, change and turbulence. Utilization of a foresight lens has the opportunity to amplify and deepen the sociological and moral imagination, as well as the strategic effectiveness of the profession of social work now and in the years ahead. The paper ends with a call to action to amplify and evolve social work strengths to join the interdisciplinary community of those using forecasting methods to build a better future.

I was surprised to find that her futurist work is centered in a foresight planning framework that also reflects on the past as much as it plans for the future. We talk about the role of technology, ethics, and how foresight and futurist work is not really a solo practice but more of a global process and way finding. It’s a practice and not necessarily a destination. My biggest take away is that the future of social work is learning how to work with technology in a way that expands our capability, not diminishes it. 

I should probably note that these blog posts are mainly place holders for any links and information that we thought would be good to share with our audience. The Posts will eventually also be home to the episode transcripts. We welcome any digital volunteers who would like to transcribe the episodes and if you feel so inclined, please reach out to us via our Contact page or on social media. This episode was really fun to produce and I hope you enjoy it. Let us know if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions. See you next month.

Dr. Laura Nissen on Twitter – @LauraNissen

Dr. Nissen’s Blog – https://socialworkfutures.com/

The Social Work Health Futures Lab

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APA (7th Ed) citation for this podcast:

Young, J. A. (Producer). (2021, January 14). #2 – An Interview with Dr. Laura Nissen discussing Social Work & the Future in a Post COVID-19 World. [Audio Podcast]. husITa Podcast. Retrieved from {URL}