The Center for Innovation in Social Work & Health (CISWH) is based at the Boston University School of Social Work. Building on the long-standing success of the School’s Social Work and Master of Public Health (MSW/MPH) dual degree program, the Center was established in 2015 after a generous gift from an anonymous donor.
The Inaugural Director of the Center, Dr. Sally Bachman, established seven learning communities within the Center to engage in a critical analysis of social work and health in the areas of global health, aging and health equity, health reform, community health, behavioral health, policy initiatives, and social work education in health. The learning communities brought together scholars, practitioners, and policymakers with expertise in social work, public health, medicine, and economics. Findings from this research were published in a special issue of the American Journal of Public Health in fall 2017 and will inform the Center’s future work. In 2018, the Center for Advancing Health Policy and Practice (previously known as the Health and Disability Working Group), with projects focused on HIV/AIDS and children with special health care needs, merged into CISWH.
In fall 2018 Dr. Jorge Delva was appointed director and Paul Farmer Professor for CISWH. Delva, who also serves as the Dean of BU School of Social Work, leads research focused on reducing health disparities and improving the lives of low-income and racial and ethnic minority populations.