Mr Graeme Simpson

Senior Lecturer, Social Work

Email address: Phone number: 01902 321381 Location: Wolverhampton Faculty: Faculty of Education Health and Wellbeing School/Institute: Institute of Community and Society Areas of expertise: Social Work (all areas, including post-qualifying and qualifying) EU social work & social policy Children, Young people & families Comparative policy


Prior to joining the University of Wolverhampton in 1997, I had 18 years experience as a children and families social worker including 12 years management experience in different settings (5 years senior Local Authority manager). I have an extensive publication record, which covers these areas as well as sociology and social policy for social workers and other welfare professional groups. I have a long-standing interest in European social work and have lectured for many years in Germany and The Netherlands as well as being an international advisor to cross-national projects. I speak German and French to a high standard and have undertaken research into the experiences of social workers crossing borders. I have researched learning disability and young carers, undertaking work for local service providers, as well as children and families social work, my latest collaborative work was for the New South Wales Government. I have previously gained funding for Skills for Care work. I have delivered over 20 conference papers including being an invited and keynote speaker, both nationally and internationally.

My main current research interests are the future of social work; the nature of wellbeing in contemporary policy; and, the future of social work education practice.

Current funded research project: Social Workers speak: the experiences of social workers in times of austerity. (University of Wolverhampton and BASW)

Current appointment Senior Lecturer, Social Work, 1997 – Present.

Institute of public health, social work and social care.


Current main teaching areas:

MA (Social Work);

BA (Social Work);


Teaching interests:

Critical thinking in social work & social work ethics

Social policy and social work

Comparative social work/care

Learning disability.

Current funded research project: Social Workers speak: the experiences of social workers in times of austerity. (University of Wolverhampton and BASW)






Membership of professional bodies


Expiry Date

1985 CQSW (Certificate of Qualification in Social Work), Leicester University


Professional Register Entry:  Registered social worker with HCPC

JUC/SWEC Internationalising the Curriculum Sub-committee, 2005 – present.


Application for Senior Fellow (HEA)



Books reviews editor, Social Work Education: The International Journal, 2015 – present.

Editorial Board member, Journal of Health and Social care Improvement, 2013 – present.

Wolverhampton Intellectual Disability Network, 2013 – present.

Faculty Research Committee, 2013 – present.

SWEC Committee Member, 2012 – present.

Member of the Social Work Practice Education Assessment development group (JUC-SWEC & College of Social Work), 2012 – 2013.

JUCSWEC Working Group, Practice Learning Development and the PCF, 2012

Wolverhampton City Council, Social Work Development Board, 2011-2012

Reviewer for:

  • Journal of Child Abuse and Neglect,      2016 onwards
    • British Journal of Learning Disability, 2011 – present.
    • The Journal of Social Work, 2009 – present.
    • European Journal of Social Work, 2007 – present.
    • International Social Work, 2007 – present.
    • The Policy Press, 2006 – present.

JUCSWEC International Committee, 2004 – present.

JUCSWEC committee 2012 – present

JUCSWEC research strategy (co-author) 2015 - present

Regular Book reviewer for European Journal of Social Work, 2002 – present.


Other relevant professional and voluntary activities

Lead member JUC-SWEC social work research strategy group (chair is Prof. Brian Littlechild).





Date attained

Certificate of Management Studies, Nottingham Trent University

MA (Social Work), Leicester University

BA (Hons) 1st Class, Open University

Nottinghamshire Practice Teaching Certificate (Social Work)





Qualification currently being undertaken:

 PhD (by publication)- 2017





  • Simpson, G. and Murr, A, (2015) “The dialectics of change in social work education” Journal of Practice Teaching and Learning. 13 (2-3 93-116)
  • Simpson, G. and Nowacki, K (2015) “Learning about ourselves through considering others: an examination of German students’ cross-national learning.” European Journal of Social Work. 18 (5) 770-784.
  • Simpson, G. (2015) Strengthening families? The Coalition government’s approach to early intervention (2010-2014) in Vincent, S. ed., Early Intervention: Supporting and Strengthening Families. Edinburgh. Dunedin Press.
  • Simpson, G. (2015) ‘Choice, Empowerment and Social Work’ in James D. Wright, Editor-in-Chief, International Encyclopedia of Social & Behavioral Sciences 2nd Edition: 520 – 525. Oxford: Elsevier Ltd.
  • Nowacki, K. and Simpson, G. (2014) Kinderschutz in Deutschland und England – Was können Studierende durch Fallanalysen lernen? Theorie und Praxis der Sozialen Arbeit Beltz Juventa. 1 31-39
  • Simpson, G., and Murr., A. (2014,) Wellbeing – turning again? Social work, economics and choice, Culture Unbound, Volume 6, article 48.
  • Simpson, G. and Murr, A. (2013) The ‘not yet competent’ student: exploring narratives of failure. Journal of Practice Teaching and Learning. 11 (3) 118-134
  • Simpson, G. (2013) Social Workers Affecting Social Policy in England, in Gal, J. and Weiss-Gal, I. (Eds) Policy Practice in Social Work. Bristol. The Policy Press.
  • Simpson, G (2013) Developing wellbeing as a critical tool in social work education: an example from the field of learning disability in Crisp, B.R. and Beddoe, L. (eds.) (2013) promoting Health and Well-being in Social Work Education. Abingdon. Routledge. [see below for journal version]
  • Simpson, G. (2012)  Developing wellbeing as a critical tool in social work education: an example from the field of learning disability. Social Work Education. 31 (5) 622-636.
  • Simpson, G., and Connor, S. (2011) Social Policy for Welfare Professionals: tools for understanding, analysis and engagement. Bristol. The Policy Press.
  • Simpson, G. (2011) Improving services through a cross-national approach: possibilities and pitfalls. Journal of Health and Social care Improvement. June, 2011
  • Simpson, G. & Price, V. (2010) From Inclusion to Exclusion: some unintended consequences of ‘Valuing People’. British Journal of Learning Disabilities. 38 (3) 180-187
  • Simpson, G. (2009) ‘Global and Local Issues in the Training of Overseas SocialWorkers’  Social Work Education 28 (6), 655 – 667. In Lawrence, S., K. Lyons, G.Simpson & N. Huegler (Eds) (2009) Introducing International Social Work. London. Learning Matters.
  • Lawrence, S. & Simpson, G. (2009) ‘International Social Work: Older Persons’ chapter 6 in ibid.
  • Simpson, G. & Lawrence S. (2009) ‘Global is local is global’ chapter 3 in ibid.
  • Simpson, G. & Littlechild, B. (2009) ‘International Social Work:Children, young people and families’ chapter 5 in ibid.
  • Williams, J. & Simpson, G. (2009) ‘Understanding International Social Work’ chapter 2 in Lawrence, S., K. Lyons, G.Simpson & N. Huegler (Eds) Introducing International Social Work. London. Learning Matters.
  • Price, V. & Simpson, G. (2007) Transforming Society? Sociology and Social Work. Bristol. The Policy Press.
  • Simpson, G. & Schoepf, M. (2006) ‘Learning by Comparing’ International Social Work 49 (2)
  • Simpson G. (2001) Entwicklungen in der UK - in Berger R. (ed) Studienfuehrer Soziale Arbeit. Sozialarbeit, sozialpaedagogik, sozialwesen. AWO, NRW Bochum. Votum.
  • Hutter A & Simpson G (1998) “Soziale Arbeit und –politik”, Stiftungsfachhochschule Munich, “Bayerische Wohlfahrtsblatt”.

Research Papers

  • Vincent, S. and Simpson, G. (2013) Intake and assessment processes in child welfare and protection systems in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Canada, the United States, Australia, the Netherlands, Germany and Sweden: A Paper to inform the NSW Program Review of Intake and Assessment. University of Wolverhampton. (£7,500)
  • Simpson, G. and Price, V. (2006) Evaluation of referrals to a facility for Learning Disabled People, with Lisieux Trust. (pro bono)
  • Simpson, G. (2005) Training for social workers recruited from overseas – commissioned by Telford and Wrekin Council. (£8,000)
  • Simpson G. & Henriques P. (2003) ‘Looked After Children - hearing their voice: an evaluation of services for children looked after’. Commissioned by Telford & Wrekin Council. (£7,500)
  • Simpson G. (2001)  ‘If I didn’t do it, who would – Young Carers in Telford’. Commissioned by Telford & Wrekin Council. (£7,500)


Book reviews:

  • Simpson, G. (2017) Csoba, Graßhoff, Hamburger (2014) Soziale Arbeit in Europa: Diskurse der Sozialarbeit, Europäisierung, soziale Bewegungen und Sozialstaat European Journal of Social Work,: 783-785  (Published online: 26 Jun 2017)
  • Simpson, G. and Cooner, T.S. (2016) Making the most of twitter: A step-by-step guide for academics. Kindle Edition. Social Work Education: the International Journal. Vol. 35 (3) 372-3 (there is also a vid-cast version of this available)
  • Simpson, G, (2013) Groterath, A (2010) Soziale Arbeit in Internationalen Organisationen: ein Handbuch zu Karrierewegen in den Vereinten Nationen und NGOs.  Verlag Barbara Budrich European Journal of Social Work 305-6
  • Simpson, G. (2008) Munday, B. (2007) Integrated Social Services in Europe. Strasbourg. Council of Europe Publishing. European Journal of Social Work  Vol. 11 (3) pp330-331
  • Simpson, G. (2008) “Aging Globalisation and Inequality: the New Critical Gerontology” Journal of Social Policy
  • Simpson, G. (2007) Effective Teaching and Learning in Social Work and Social Policy” Learning and Teaching in the Social Sciences
  • Simpson, G. (2007) “The Future of Work in Europe” European Journal of Social Work 
  • Simpson, G. (2002) “The Politics of Social Work” Social Work in Europe: Vol 9; 2 (2002)


Conference Presentations (peer review)

  • Simpson, G. and Nowacki, K. (2017) Local and European: The continuing importance of transnational learning. EASSW, Univerisite Descatres, Paris. 27-29 June, 2017.
  • Nowacki, K., Simpson, G., and Remiorz, S. (2017) Refugees and asylums seekers: creating a counter-narrative – a core part of a 21st century social work internationalised curriculum. EASSW, Univerisite Descatres, Paris. 27-29 June, 2017.
  • Simpson, G. and Nowacki, K. (2016)Kevin and Peter: two preventable child deaths.JUCSWEC, Milton Keynes, 13-15 July.
    • Simpson, G. (2015) Preserving the radical tradition: involving practitioners and activists in social work education in England. EASSW: Social Work Education in Europe: towards 2025, Bicocca University, Milan, Italy 29 June – 2 July.
    • Simpson, G. and Murr, A. (2014) The dialectics of change in social work education or ‘Do not disconnect from power source whilst updates are installed’? 10th International Conference on Practice Teaching and Field Education in Health and Social Work. University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland Monday April 7th–Tuesday April 8th.
    • Simpson, G. and Vincent, S. (2013) Real world research: social science research and social welfare in SHAW. Paper presented at the staff research day, Walsall Campus: 27th June, 2013
    • Simpson, G. (2013) Developing a sociological imagination for practice in the social work student. International Conference on Sociology and Social Work. Aalberg, Denmark; 30-31 May.
    • Simpson, G. (2011) Engaging with the policy process: the importance of narrative for social professionals. EASSW and ENSACT Conference, Brussels, 13-15 April.
    • Williams, J.E., Simpson, G. and Lawrence, S. (2011) SWIM (Social Work International Materials) An Open Access Curriculum Resource. Symposium, EASSW and ENSACT Conference, Brussels, 13-15 April.
    • Simpson, G., Waller, T., and Leese, M. (2009) How was it for you? Experiences from the front line in Integrated Children’s Services. Human Dilemmas Conference,Staffordshire University, 10 September.
    • Simpson, G. & Lawrence, S (2009) Sharing effective practice in the local and global context. Symposium, JUCSWEC Conference, Hertford University. Hatfield, 9 July.
    • Simpson, G. & Price, V. (2009) Inclusive principles for social work with learning disabled people in the UK. EASSW and ENSACT Conference, Dubrovnik, 27 April.
    • Simpson, G. (2009) Encouraging engagement: a study educating social work practitioners to engage with policy processes as ‘good practice’. EASSW and ENSACT Conference, Dubrovnik, 27 April.
    • Lawrence, S., Simpson, G., Williams,J., Davis A. (2007) What is International Social Work? Poster presentation. 11-13 July, Joint Social Work Education and Research Conference, University of Wales, Swansea.
    • Price, V. & Simpson, G. (2007) From Inclusion to Exclusion. 16 March, EASSW Conference, Parma, Italy


Public talks, symposia & invited addresses

  • Simpson, G. (2017) before we leave: thoughts on social work in mainland Europe. BASW/University of Wolverhampton seminar series. Wolverhampton 15th June, 2017.
  • Simpson, G. (2016) closing address, BASW Solidarity with Refugees, University of Wolverhampton. 6thJune,
    • Simpson, G. (2015) Social Work and Austerity. University of Swansea. 29th April.
    • Simpson, G. (2014) Social Work and Inequality: a view from the other side of Offa’s dyke. Keynote speaker, Cardiff University/BASW International Social Day Celebration. Cardiff University. 19th March.
    • Simpson, G. (2014) Social Work and Austerity. West Midlands BASW Day Conference, Wolverhampton: 4th March.
    • Simpson, G. (2013) Using holistic assessment for assessing practice learning: the challenge for academics and practice educators. Assessing Practice and the PCF; SWEC/College of Social Work Conference. Birmingham University. 9 May
    • Simpson, G. (2013) International Perspectives – incorporation in a BA & MA Social Work Programme. Cardiff University Symposium. 10 May.


  • Simpson, G (2008) Messages from Research. Stay Safe: Regional Conference, University of Wolverhampton, 26 June.
  • Simpson, G (2008) Internationalisation and Social Work. January 29, Symposium: Comparative Research in health and Social Care: some issues in comparative research. Institute for health and Social Care Research, Salford Centre for Social Work Research.
  • Simpson, G (2007) Understanding the impact of locality. April, International Social Work Perspectives, Amsterdam.
  • Simpson, G (2007) Familieerziehungshilfe in England. March 12 -13, FH Dortmund.



Enterprise, Knowledge Transfer & Consultancy


Current research projects (non-funded)

Continuing research into social care provision for people with learning disabilities (with Vicky Price)

Continuing research into Children’s social work in a comparative framework (see collaborative Erasmus links)

The use of the dialectic and Marxist theory within social work.


2012 Skills for care developing CPD (collaborative bid with colleagues at UoW and partner agencies, total value £20,000)

2006-9 Skills for Care Every child matters projects – collaborative with UoW colleagues during a 3 year period. Total bid value was £100,000+.




Previous professional experience



Date From

Date To


Honours Posts: International Consultant: Raising fatherhood: Facets, determinants and perspectives of modern paternal love.CENOF: The Central European Network on Fatherhood Headquarter at the University of Vienna

Course Leader/Curriculum development MA (social work)

Qualifying Social Work, PMC

Research co-ordinator social care (CHSCI)

Children’s Workforce Development Committee (CWDC): member of the virtual advisory panel (ad hoc appointment, University of Wolverhampton)

Honorary Visiting Associate-Professor, International Studies, FH Dortmund

Co-ordinator: Post Qualifying Social Work Children, Young People,

their Families and Carers (CYPFC)

Honorary Senior Lecturer, InHolland, University Amsterdam

International Co-Ordinator for Social Work, Social Care and Social Policy (SH&W International Committee).


PQ Child Care, Award Co-Ordinator

PQ Child Care Programme Management Committee (PMC) & Award Board

Service Manager (Children in Need/Child Protection) Nottingham West

Associate Lecturer, Open University

Team Manager (Children in Need) Nottingham West

Senior Social Worker Broxtowe District (Child Care Cervices)

Social Worker (Child Care)

Residential Social Work – various positions in several

Nottinghamshire SSD establishments, culminating in Assistant

Manager. Thus period also included a secondment to qualify as a

Social Worker (see above).







2012 -





























































Further information

External Examiner

University of Sussex, 2014 – 2016

Cardiff Metropolitan University, 2015 - 2016

PQ (CYPFC) University of Cumbria, 2009 – 2014.

BSc (Social Work) London Metropolitan University (completed), 2007 – 2012.

Research Focus

Social Welfare theme research group – lead on ‘critical practices’ cluster

Learning Disability (WIDN)

Critical understandings of well-being in contemporary policy

Practice Learning

Social work as social policy and its political dimension.

Current funded research project: Social Workers speak: the experiences of social workers in times of austerity. (University of Wolverhampton and BASW)

Research Interests/Achievements

Comparative issues in Safeguarding and protecting children;

Comparative issues in Social work/care & learning disability;

Social work as social policy and its political dimension;

Social work history.

  • The main research paradigm focuses upon how the economic, social and political organisation shapes the nature of social work and those who use its services, drawing upon Marxist/Gramscian theory, in the exploration of class hegemony and the dialectic.