Social policy journal celebrates 25 years

The York-based Canadian Review of Social Policy (CRSP) celebrates 25 years with a special anniversary issue, just out.

The 25th Anniversary Edition: The Present is the Past and the Future documents the origins of this bilingual academic journal and how it became one of the leading journals for social work academia in the country.

The journal began as SPAN Newsletter in 1979, published by the Social Policy & Administration Network. It was brought to York three years ago by Brigitte Kitchen and Susan McGrath, professors in Atkinson’s School of Social Work. In this anniversary issue, edited by Kitchen and social work Prof. Ann Curry-Stevens, the journal’s founders reminisce about creating the journal, its impact on Canadian social policy and changes in the Canadian social work profession over the decades.

The journal emerged out of a goal to unify the disorganized voices of social policy communities in universities across the country. It publishes articles and book reviews on current and historical issues of social policy and administration. It has challenged the dismantling of the welfare state, pro-corporate economic policies and neoliberal social policy. And it has been a catalyst for bringing together diverse academics to address social policy issues.

“It is exciting that York is hosting CRSP at the time of its 25th anniversary,” said McGrath, who stepped down as editor in January. “It is a good time to recognize the Canadian social welfare programs that have survived neo-liberal policies and celebrate the revival of social policy courses and programs at York and at universities across the country. CRSP’s efforts to engage the academic and [social work] communities in meaningful and productive discussions and writings are hopeful signs for a renewal of progressive social policy in Canada.”

The journal is edited by Kitchen and Thaddeus Hwong, a professor of tax law and public policy at York, and is published twice a year. It is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. In January, it will launch a redesigned Web site, sponsored by Rhonda Lenton, dean of York’s Atkinson Faculty of Liberal & Professional Studies. As a result, “the journal will be in a better position than ever before to promote a dialogue between researchers and practitioners in social policy not only in Canada but also elsewhere in our global village,” said Hwong.

For copies of the anniversary issue or more information, visit the journal office in the Kinsmen Building on the  Keele campus, call ext. 70620, e-mail or go to the Canadian Review of Social Policy Web site.