Programmes crossing borders: The international travelling of programmes in social work
01 - Zeitschriftenartikel, Journalartikel oder Magazin
The influence of evidence-based policy and practice is increasingly found in the field of social work. Using Multisystemic Therapy (MST) as a case, this article explores issues arising from the travelling of programmes to settings that are different and distant from those of their origin. While such travelling is often accompanied and facilitated by narratives of positive findings in effectiveness trials, it can be argued that effectiveness and efficiency are influenced by contextual conditions and therefore the informational value of such trials is limited. Accepting that there are epistemic and practical limits to the idea of a universal effectiveness of a certain programme, the travelling of programmes is not necessarily a case of the ‘best ideas’ being adopted and such travelling therefore requires critical examination. Decisions on programme adoption should be based not only on effectiveness trials, but also on knowledge about the generic elements of (alternative) programmes as well as on knowledge about contextual conditions including the needs of local service users and gaps in local service provision.
European Journal of Social Work