CISWH and BUSSW Professors Identify New Violence Prevention Strategies for Children in South Africa

Photo courtesy of Diego Delso,, License CC-BY-SA

A recent UNICEF report sheds light on an unspoken reality—approximately 300 million young children worldwide regularly face violent discipline by their caregivers, a serious infringement of their human rights. CISWH faculty affiliates and Boston University School of Social Work (BUSSW) Profs. Margaret Lombe and Lenette Azzi-Lessing collaborated with Dr. Shanaaz Mathews and Lizette Berry of the Children’s Institute at the University of Cape Town to address this global health problem and identify new and promising violence prevention strategies. This effort stems from a one year University-Community Partnerships research grant from the Institute for Early Childhood Well-Being at Boston University’s Wheelock College of Education & Human Development.

In a new wide-ranging review, the team, which includes Linda Biersteker, a senior research associate at the Children’s Institute, and Leigh Morrison, director of True North, shares how they developed an innovative, evidence-based, and community-driven violence prevention project in South Africa to further inform the anti-violence efforts of policy makers, practitioners, and other researchers in low and middle income countries. The project included:

  • An expert panel where practitioners and researchers from LMICs were able to share their perspectives.
  • Three community gatherings in Vrygrond, South Africa to elicit residents’ perspectives on key risk  factors, existing resources, and approaches that hold promise for preventing violence against young children in their community.
  • A concluding workshop to integrate learnings from the literature review and the expertise of researchers, practitioners, and community residents, as well as recommendations for next steps. 

The completion of the grant-funded project reveals the complex nature of addressing violence against children, rejecting the idea of “one size fits all” program models. Successful interventions include parent and caregiver support, gender transformative programs, and initiatives supporting preschool teachers. The project review underscores the need for longer, more intensive interventions, and the mainstreaming of programs through large scale government programs to reach vulnerable populations. 

Now that the project has been completed, the team has shifted their attention to sharing their findings globally. Additionally, Profs. Lombe and Azzi-Lessing are collaborating with the current leadership of the Children’s Institute to explore opportunities for developing an innovative, community-engaged demonstration project aimed toward violence prevention. 

Read the full report here. 

Continuing the Conversation with CISWH Director Tami Gouveia: Shaping the Future of Social Work in Health and Public Health

In October, Dr. Tami Gouveia, Center for Innovation in Social Work and Health (CISWH) director, in collaboration with Boston University School of Social Work (BUSSW) dean Barbara Jones, explored the pivotal role that CISWH and BUSSW play in elevating the influence of social workers in health and public health.

Following the event, CISWH reconnected with Dr. Gouveia to hear her responses to unanswered questions from the audience. 


What can we do to preserve what little we have, while also addressing the elimination of social programs? 

I often reflect on the significant impact of money in politics, a foundational issue that heavily influences the individuals elected into office. The transparency around PAC (Political Action Committee) donors is limited, and these committees often attempt to sway voters. While it may seem unconventional, understanding the role of money in politics is critical because those who are elected determine our investments. They decide whether we prioritize school lunches, affordable housing, and a reliable transportation system. Social workers play a critical role in electing legislators who will listen to the needs of our residents and who will prioritize our patients’ and clients’ health and well-being. Social workers are out there every day advocating for programs that support the well-being of our clients. We need legislative leaders who are partners with us and who are not beholden to special interests influenced by dark money donors. 


Can you speak to your experience as a social worker in the state government? How can fellow social workers navigate advocacy through the state legislature?

Social workers who run for elected office or who serve in appointed offices have a unique opportunity to leverage the skill set that we have. Our values and our code of ethics are so fundamental to health and well-being. When I was in elected office, I came across social workers who were advocating for all kinds of issues. I interacted with social workers who were fighting for reproductive justice and access to abortion as health care. That’s just one example of how social workers show up in pushing elected officials toward health equity. I’m always encouraging social workers to run for office. Social workers make the best policy makers because they understand the issues that people are dealing with, they have the research and clinical skills, and they have the ability to connect people to community-based care and resources.


How do we continue to invest in and develop the field of social work to ensure we have a voice in health and public health? 

Social workers are often the glue that’s holding a lot of teams, particularly clinical care teams, together. We’re also major advocates of public health. However, we often get overlooked. It’s on us to produce the research that demonstrates the value of social work leadership and social workers in health and public health. It’s also about making sure that we’re investing in ongoing education and workforce development so that social workers who might want to tap into a career in health care or public health have the skills and the background necessary to thrive in those fields. The reality is that every single person in our country will need a social worker at some point in their lives. It’s really important that we do the work to make sure that the general public, our policymakers, and larger institutions really see the value of social workers as part of their teams.


What are your thoughts on the maternal health care crisis in the Black community? 

Not only are Black communities impacted severely by the lack of access to affordable healthcare, but also by racism that continues to pervade healthcare institutions. This includes the ways healthcare providers interact with Black families and Black pregnant people, and the ways that our financing system makes it so incredibly difficult for people to access the information and care that they need and deserve for healthy and safe pregnancy, delivery, and follow-up care. I am really excited about the programs and projects at CISWH that have been ongoing, including the Black Women First Initiative led by Dr. Linda Sprague Martinez. This is a crisis that has persisted for several centuries, and it’s time that we make the investments needed to support Black parents, moms, babies, and families so that everybody has the opportunity to thrive. 


How are CISWH and BUSSW actively working to diversify the social work profession? 

We need to tackle the issues facing the social work workforce and profession from multiple angles. First, we know we don’t have enough social workers to respond to the mental health crisis we are in. Second, we know that we are not always effectively meeting the needs of our diverse population because we don’t have enough social workers of color, or social workers who are multicultural and multilingual. We must work to eliminate the structural barriers that lock first-generation, low-income, disabled, LGBTQ+, multi-lingual, and folks of color out of the profession. Debt-free higher education and student loan forgiveness as well as paid practica can alleviate the financial burdens many students face. Many social work students have several jobs, are responsible for the care and financial needs of other family members, and have to take out hefty loans to finance their education. If we are serious as a society and as a profession about supporting the mental and physical well-being needs of our residents, then we must do more to support students who wish to pursue social work as their chosen profession.


Read more about how social workers can become leaders in health and public health.

Embracing the Future: A Welcome Reception Celebrating Tami Gouveia’s Leadership in Social Work and Public Health

In a transformative year for the Center for Innovation in Social Work and Health, Dr. Tami Gouveia was proudly welcomed as the Center’s new executive director. As a visionary leader in the realms of social work and public health, Dr. Gouveia’s arrival marks a new chapter of innovation. Following an engaging discussion led by BUSSW Dean Barbara Jones and Dr. Gouveia, the community gathered for a welcome reception, dedicated to celebrating Dr. Gouveia’s profound impact on social work and public service. 

During the event, several speakers shared their perspectives on Dr. Gouveia’s journey, emphasizing the lasting impact she has had in the two fields and her visionary leadership: 


Prof. Harold Cox, BU School of Public Health

“Tami Gouveia is not your ordinary leader. She is a force of nature. She believes in positive change and she is someone who believes in getting things done.” 


Mass. State Senator Jamie Eldridge 

“For anyone who followed Tami’s tenure as a legislator, she was someone who spoke truth to power, who was very independent-minded, very data focused, and really was successful in a number of areas of legislative action that we are seeing the benefits of to this day.”


Carla B. Monteiro, MSW, LICSW

“Witnessing such a remarkable individual like Tami, who has dedicated her life to social work and public service is heartening. Her unwavering commitment to the betterment of others is truly inspiring, as she serves as an example for all of us to follow.”

Check out the thought-provoking dialogue that unfolded between Dr. Tami Gouveia and Dean Barabara Jones during the Shaping the Future of Social Work in Health & Public Health event here.

CISWH & BUSSW Students, Faculty, and Community Leaders Participate in 12th Annual BU Global Programs International Education Week 2023

Thursday, November 9, 2023
12:00 – 2:00 PM 
Conant Lounge, 2nd Floor
BU School of Social Work, 264 Bay State Road

Connecting Hearts and Minds: a Dialogue on Community 
Engagement & Trauma-Informed Global Social Work

CISWH and BU School of Social Work (BUSSW) students, faculty, and community leaders will share their experiences with partnership exchanges in Nicaragua, Kenya, and Uganda at the Connecting Hearts and Minds: a Dialogue on Community Engagement & Trauma-Informed Global Social Work event. This event is being held as part of BU Global Programs International Education Week (IEW) 2023.

The panelists will share insights about trauma-informed practices to reduce stigma and advance health and well-being.

  • Rebecca Joseph, BUSSW MSW/MPH student, will share her experiences as a fellow collaborating with the University of Global Health Equity in Rwanda.
  • Monica Salazar, BUSSW MSW student and Prof. Margaret Lombe, PhD and Global Health Core affiliate will highlight student-led experiences in the Kakuma Refugee Camp, Kenya.
  • Mojdeh Rohani, LICSW and Lauren Shebairo, LICSW of De Novo Center for Justice and Healing, along with Emilia Bianco, PhD, BUSSW lecturer and Global Health Core affiliate will highlight their work with migrants and refugees in Uganda and other East African countries. 

  • Prof. Luz López, PhD, MPH, BUSSW faculty and director of the Global Health Core will discuss partnerships she has developed that deliver trauma-informed services in Nicaragua.

IEW is a joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education to celebrate the benefits of international education and exchange.

Zoom Link Here

9/28: CISWH Faculty and Board Members Share Expertise at “Transnational Social Protection” Panel

Transnational Social Protection: Social Welfare Across National Borders

Thursday, September 28 2023

3:30 – 5:00 PM 

5th Floor Conference Room

704 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA

A Panel Discussion Presented by

The Migration Workshop at Boston University (BU); Co-Sponsored by BU Center for Innovation in Social Sciences and BU Department of Sociology 

Join Prof. Luz Lopez, CISWH global core director and BU School of Social Work (BUSSW) clinical professor, and Prof. Muhammad Zaman, CISWH board member and BU College of Engineering professor, for a book discussion on Transnational Social Protection: Social Welfare Across National Borders by Peggy Levitt, Erica Dobbs, Ken Sun, and Ruxandra Paul. 

The authors will deliver a presentation on the book, followed by a panel discussion featuring Profs. Lopez and Zamad. Transnational Social Protection: Social Welfare Across National Borders argues against the antiquated idea that eligibility for social rights is dependent on citizenship or where we live. The authors explore how migrants and their families increasingly draw social protections from multiple sources in a world where more and more people are living, working, and retiring outside of their countries of citizenship. 

Learn More Here 

Yahoo Finance – Black Women First Initiative Partners with CISWH and UMass Lowell to Transform HIV Care and Support for Black Women

The Black Women First (BWF) initiative is the first-ever national project devoted to enhancing the health outcomes of cisgender and transgender Black women living with HIV. As part of the BWF initiative, UMass Lowell, in collaboration with The Center for Innovation in Social Work & Health (CISWH) at BU School of Social Work, has successfully completed a three year effort to implement evidence-based interventions at 12 different sites nationwide.

The comprehensive strategies from BWF were created with the ultimate goal of engaging and retaining Black women living with HIV into essential treatment and care. The array of supports included trauma-informed care, screening for intimate partner violence and health literacy services.

Excerpt from “First-Ever National Initiative Addressing the Health of Black Cisgender and Transgender Women with HIV Releases Site-Specific Outcomes” originally published on Yahoo Finance: 

“‘. . . These interventions recognized the diverse backgrounds, experiences, and culturally relevant care needs of Black women,” says Serena Rajabiun, Principal Investigator, UMass Lowell. “Black cisgender and transgender women with HIV . . . require tailored services to feel supported in treatment and care.’

The BWF initiative’s approach paid off. After three years, sites reported marked increases in Black cisgender and transgender women’s linkage to care within 30 days of HIV diagnosis, retention in care, well-being, maintenance of viral suppression, stigma reduction, resiliency, and quality of life. Clients reported improvements in their health literacy, coping skills, and ability to access behavioral, clinical, and support services, coupled with reduced feelings and experiences with stigma and discrimination.”

Read the full article here.

10/23: Shaping the Future of Social Work in Health and Public Health

Shaping the Future of Social Work in Health and Public Health 

A Virtual and In-Person Event

Monday, October 23, 2023
4:00 – 5:00 PM
Zoom; Kilachand Center Room 101
610 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

View the Recording

Social work leadership in health and public health is needed now more than ever. So how is the social work field preparing for the future? What promise does the field hold for addressing the challenges that lay ahead? How can social workers stir rapid change for equitable and accessible health and well-being for all? 

In this important discussion, Center for Innovation in Social Work and Health (CISWH) Director Dr. Tami Gouveia and Boston University School of Social Work (BUSSW) Dean Barbara Jones explore how social workers can strengthen public health and the ways CISWH and BUSSW are forging a path for social work leadership in health equity. 


4:00 pm: Opening remarks by Robyn Golden, Associate Vice President of Social Work and Community Health and and Chair of the Department of Social Work, Rush University Medical Center

4:05 pm: Conversation with Dr. Tami Gouveia and Dean Barbara Jones moderated by Dr. Linda Sprague Martinez, Director of the University of Connecticut (UConn) Health Disparities Center at UConn School of Medicine and UConn Health

4:35 pm: Audience Q&A 

4:55 pm: Closing remarks by Prof. Luz López, BUSSW clinical professor and CISWH Global Health Core director

Continuing Education Credit Info: 

Content Level: Intermediate

The target audience of this lecture and discussion is LICSW, LCSW, LSW, LSWA, and other health care professionals. The Future of Social Work in Health is approved by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program to be offered by the Center for Innovation in Social Work and Health as an individual course. Individual courses, not providers, are approved at the course level. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. ACE course approval period: 10/23/2023 – 10/23/2025. Social workers completing this course receive 1 continuing education credit.

1.0 national continuing education credit (free) is available to social workers licensed in the United States after completing a brief post-event quiz. The event will provide intermediate-level content and must be attended live to receive CE credits. Please provide your license number during registration if you want to receive credits. The post-event quiz will be sent out at the end of the event. Applicants must earn a score of 70% or higher to receive the CE certificate, which will be sent via email. Questions? Contact [email protected].

Learning Objectives: 

  • Describe how CISWH and BUSSW are lifting up the role of social workers in health and public health.
  • Describe how social workers in health and public health can leverage rapid change to strengthen the field for the future.
  • Identify how CISWH is leading and enhancing social work’s role in fostering equitable health and well-being for all.


Boston University strives to be accessible, inclusive, and diverse in its facilities, programming, and academic offerings. Your experience in this event is important to us. If you have a disability (including but not limited to learning or attention, mental health, concussion, vision, mobility, hearing, physical, or other health-related issues), requiring communication access services for the deaf or hard of hearing, or believe that you require a reasonable accommodation for another reason, please contact the event organizer at [email protected] to discuss your needs.

About Dr. Tami Gouveia

Appointed director of the Center for Innovation in Social Work & Health and Paul Farmer Professor of Practice in 2023, Dr. Tami Gouveia has extensive experience as a leader in social work and public health, policymaking, and change management. Throughout her 25-year career, she has used her expertise to drive meaningful change, improve community health outcomes, and promote economic and racial equity. She served in key leadership positions in nonprofit, philanthropic, and governmental organizations, including as director at the Massachusetts State Auditor’s Office, The Rippel Foundation, Tobacco Free Mass, and the Greater Lawrence Family Health Center. Believing in the power of people working together for our shared humanity, Dr. Gouveia founded and led several efforts, including the Lowell Roundtable on Substance Abuse Prevention and the Massachusetts Chapter of the Women’s March.

Dr. Gouveia was elected to two terms in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, where she passed legislation to combat the opioid crisis, defend reproductive justice and LGBTQ+ rights, advance housing and climate justice, reform education funding and the criminal legal system, and invest in programs to prevent and treat childhood trauma.

Dr. Gouveia holds a Doctor of Public Health in management, leadership and policy and a Master of Public Health from the BU School of Public Health and a Master of Social Work from the BU School of Social Work.

About Dr. Barbara Jones 

Dean Barbara Jones, PhD, MSW, FAOSW, is one of the nation’s top scholars in the field of psychosocial oncology and palliative care. She joined BUSSW in 2023 from the University of Texas at Austin where she had been a member of the faculty for nearly twenty years. At UT Austin, Jones served as university distinguished professor, Lockhart Memorial Professor in Direct Social Work Practice, founding director of the Institute for Collaborative Health Research and Practice, and associate dean for Health Affairs in the university’s Steve Hicks School of Social Work. She was also a distinguished professor and inaugural chair of the Department of Health Social Work at UT Austin’s Dell Medical School – a department she helped build to bridge the social work and medical schools.

A first-generation college student, Jones earned her PhD and MSW in social welfare from the University at Albany (NY) and practiced as a clinical social worker for 15 years. She served from 2004-2011 as core faculty on the Initiative for Pediatric Palliative Care at Boston Children’s Hospital and is currently on the national advisory boards for the Cambia Health Foundation Sojourns Scholars Leadership Program and the American Cancer Society’s Center for Diversity in Research Training. She serves on the national steering committee of the Coalition for Social Work and Health. Her research, which is supported by major grants from the National Institutes of Health and the American Cancer Society, focuses on improving care for children, adolescents, and young adults with cancer and their families. 

Rethinking Social Work Research with Prof. Jorge Delva

Social work research has come a long way in recent years, cementing a place for the discipline with high-quality research and publications in prestigious academic journals. Despite this progress, Prof. Jorge Delva, former BU School of Social Work Dean and former director of the Center for Innovation in Social Work & Health reminds us that social workers in academia would be remiss to forget their roots as social change activists. 

In a recent article published by the Journal of the Society for Social Work and Research, Prof. Jorge Delva and Prof. Laura Abrams, professor and department chair of social welfare at UCLA, explore the substantial growth of social work research after a decades-long fight for a seat at the table with other sciences. At the same time, Prof. Delva notes that social work researchers also have unique expertise and skills to conduct research that can influence social movements and directly improve the lives of people who are marginalized. 

“Many of us in social work think the pendulum switched to a more standard way of doing research and pursuing large grants so that we could gain legitimacy within the academic community,” Prof. Delva explains. “I think we moved a little too far away from the implementation aspect of the work. We need to find a balance where we’re doing cutting-edge research in service of developing knowledge that leads to improvements in our communities.”

Profs. Delva and Abrams want to celebrate the significant developments in social work research while also exploring ways to strike that balance.

“I think we had to go through that process when the pendulum swung away from direct impact, in part because we needed to establish that structural strength and knowledge base,” Prof. Delva says. “Our article seeks to remind social work researchers of the need to continue conducting cutting-edge research and publishing in highly-ranked journals without forgetting direct impact.”

To find that middle ground, there will need to be systemic change in universities. Prof. Delva has experienced these challenges firsthand.

“Because university rankings are tied to funding and publication in prestigious journals, there is tremendous pressure to prioritize those aspects over impact. We hear the voices of university leaders who want quantity and quality of publications, including large grants, the faculty who want to conduct high-impact research and ideally not at the cost of ignoring community priorities, and the community who prioritizes community impact and well-being as they should; they all have different priorities that too often compete against each other,” Prof. Delva says. 

Social work researchers, Prof. Delva included, are looking to address these challenges. He recommends calling on deans, particularly those at institutions with robust research infrastructure, to think more about impactful, practical research now that social work has found its footing in academia. 

“Those schools with more resources can call on our deans to start thinking differently about research and how to incentivize and support faculty,” Prof. Delva notes.

Deans at different institutions are focused on different priorities. While one university may celebrate knowledge development activities that directly impacts society, others are more focused on knowledge development for the purpose of journal publications. Prof. Delva calls for more conversations about the role research plays in social work both as a discipline and profession. With more institutions in the conversation, the pendulum can begin to swing back toward equilibrium.

Some deans, Prof. Delva noted, are starting to push for these discussions and many have welcomed it. But many don’t.

“Some people have hinted that I’m trying to water down rigor in our scholarship, but I’m not arguing against rigor. I’ll always argue for the most rigor in the work we do. I’m arguing for the translation of that knowledge into something with more immediate impact,” Prof. Delva explains. 

Social work has made inroads across disciplines as a result of this rigorous scientific development. In recent years, especially, there has been a call for more diversity of thought and experiences, including centering more social work research on social justice. This move for rigorous scholarship paired with real-world impact and social justice are influencing all the fields where social workers practice and conduct research. 

“We bring the social justice lens. We bring the questions about the context and the individual that other professions either ignore or haven’t thought about as carefully as we have in social work,” Prof. Delva says. “Now that there’s been a call to consider more of the complexity of the world, people are accepting, welcoming, and inviting social workers who can hold their ground scientifically, while bringing that additional social justice lens to the table.”

This broadened understanding of social work’s impact across many disciplines extends to general public perception, too. Public understanding of a social worker’s role varies widely around the world. According to Prof. Delva, developing countries often understand social workers to be activists and community organizers while in more economically developed countries, social workers are seen more as therapists with less emphasis on activism and community organizing.

“The need to educate the world about what social work is is critical. I’ve seen it in different countries. Once we start educating people on what social workers do, whether it’s in the U.S. or elsewhere, people clearly appreciate its value,” Prof. Delva says.

Dr. Tami Gouveia Named Director of the Center for Innovation in Social Work & Health

BOSTON – Dr. Tami Gouveia, a veteran public health social worker and former Massachusetts state representative, will join the Center for Innovation in Social Work & Health (CISWH) at BU School of Social Work (BUSSW) as its new director beginning July 1, 2023.

Dr. Gouveia brings over two decades of policymaking and operational leadership to CISWH in the public health and social work fields, from advancing legislation as a state lawmaker to improve community health outcomes to providing technical assistance to local coalitions focused on preventing substance use and increasing access to treatment.  

“In talking with Dr. Gouveia about her experience, passion for and track record of improving community health access and outcomes, and long-term vision for the Center, it was clear early on that her collaborative approach to leadership, close ties and deep familiarity with BU’s social work and public health missions, and strong connections with local, state, and federal policymakers are an ideal fit to guide CISWH’s continued emergence as a leading producer of solutions in the social work field,” said Jean Morrison, Boston University provost and chief academic officer. 

Dr. Gouveia has 25 years of experience as a social worker and joins CISWH from the Office of the Massachusetts State Auditor, where she was most recently director of health and human services audits and, prior to that, a Massachusetts state representative serving the 14th Middlesex District from 2019 to 2023. As a legislator, Dr. Gouveia authored over 20 bills to advance economic and racial equity in public health, social services, and mental health and led advocacy efforts around education, transportation, and climate equity. She was a principled voice in the legislature who championed efforts to combat the opioid crisis, defend reproductive justice and LGBTQ+ rights, reform the criminal justice system, and treat and prevent childhood trauma. She was also a candidate for lieutenant governor in 2022. 
She holds a Doctor of Public Health in management, leadership, and policy, and a Master of Public Health from the BU School of Public Health and a Master of Social Work from the BU School of Social Work. She previously served as director of Tobacco Free Mass and founded and chaired the Lowell Roundtable on Substance Abuse Prevention. She also previously worked at The Rippel Foundation and the Greater Lawrence Family Health Center and has advocated to protect children from exposure to environmental toxins, increase the minimum wage and ensure paid sick leave for all. 
“As a Boston University alumna, public health social worker, and policymaker, I am thrilled to join the Center for Innovation in Social Work & Health at BUSSW as its next director,” Dr. Gouveia said. “I am eager to lead the charge in cultivating a climate of innovation, collaboration, and transformative solutions to create lasting impact in the lives of diverse individuals and communities. I look forward to working with exceptional faculty, research staff, and partners to spearhead a new era of change and progress for the health, well-being, and dignity of all. Through cutting-edge research, strategic partnerships, and a commitment to equity and social justice, the Center will help shape the future of social work and public health.” 

As director of CISWH, Dr. Gouveia will report to the incoming Dean of BUSSW, Dr. Barbara Jones. Together they will lead BUSSW’s efforts at the national level to expand the impact of social work and social workers in healthcare delivery, public health, and global health – work targeted at improving outcomes, improving patient experiences, promoting population health, and stimulating health equity nationally and globally. 

Launched in 2017, CISWH is a research center within BUSSW. CISWH achieves its mission by building strategic partnerships with those working at the intersection of social work and public health. Leveraging the expertise of faculty and researchers across BU who focus on the social determinants of health and social justice, the Center is committed to improving the health and well-being of vulnerable populations nationally and globally.

4/24 – Join CISWH at the Center on Forced Displacement Annual Conference featuring Nobel Prize Winner Abdulrazak Gurnah

A Conversation with Abdulrazak Gurnah

Monday, April 24, 2023

6:00 – 8:00 PM 

Morse Auditorium
602 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA

An Annual Conference Event Presented by

The Center on Forced Displacement


Join Prof. Muhammad Zaman, Center for Innovation in Social Work and Health (CISWH) board member and Center on Forced Displacement (CFD) director, for a conversation with Abdulrazak Gurnah, winner of the 2021 Nobel Prize in Literature. At this event inaugurating the first CFD Annual Conference, Gurnah, Prof. Zaman, and Prof. Carrie Preston will discuss research, art and activism.

Abdulrazak Gurnah is known for his novels and critical studies of post-colonial literature. Gurnah grew up in Zanzibar and was forcibly displaced in the 1960s when the oppression and persecution of Arab citizens were widespread throughout the country. Eventually, Gurnah was able to secure asylum in England. Based on his own personal experiences, Gurnah’s novels portray the impacts of decolonization in East Africa.

The CFD Annual Conference is sponsored by the Center on Forced Displacement, the Mellon Foundation, Kilachand Honors College, the Pardee School of Global Studies, the BU Arts Initiative, and the College of Arts & Sciences Center for Humanities.

This event is open to the public, but registration is required. 

Learn More and Register Here

This conversation is followed by a full-day research symposium on April 25 (register for the symposium HERE.)

The Center for Innovation in Social Work & Health (CISWH) is a research center within Boston University School of Social Work (BUSSW). CISWH achieves its mission by building strategic partnerships with those working at the intersection of social work and public health. Leveraging  the expertise of faculty and researchers across BU who focus on the social determinants of health and social justice, the center is committed to improving the health and well-being of vulnerable populations nationally and globally.