Co-Creating a “Sustainable New Normal” for Social Work and Beyond: Embracing an Ecosocial Worldview

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Meredith C.F. Powers, Associate Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:

Abstract: We have an opportunity to help shape new systems and structures that redress injustices and course correct us for a trajectory that is infinitely better than the one on which we are now set. We can co-create a sustainable new normal, intentionally and mindfully, alongside those who are most impacted by factors of oppression, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Such a new trajectory would mitigate both the unintentional harm and blatant atrocities done to people and our ecosystem, as well as heal and promote holistic, mutual well-being. Since the dawn of the profession, many social workers have practiced using an expanded understanding of the person–environment framework (i.e., social, political, economic, and environmental) and have drawn upon Indigenous worldviews. However, our current mainstream professional models are entrenched in the growth ideology, which perpetuates the very injustices that we seek to eliminate. Therefore, we need to embrace an ecosocial worldview, shifting conversations and actions towards alternative approaches and establish new policies and practices. In order to equip the profession to meet these roles and responsibilities and address these interwoven injustices, we highlight examples of real, successful alternatives implemented across the globe and pose considerations for re-envisioning and co-creating a sustainable new normal, for the profession and beyond.

Additional Information

Sustainability, 13(19), 10941
Language: English
Date: 2021
ecosocial worldview, sustainability, sustainable development, sustainable new normal, degrowth

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