Supervision: One construct, many practices?

Liz Beddoe

On Wednesday this last week I presented a paper at JSWEC in England. This presentation was more challenging than usual as we were locked out of the PC in the room and I had lost my notes somewhere in transit. So I gave this 20 minute paper from memory. There’s a link to the slides below. So if you were present you might comment on what I remembered and what I left out. I was lucky to have Harry Vennings in the room- cartoonist and creator of Clare in the Community. This first cartoon captures the essence of my talk. Is supervision a portable construct?

Vennings suitcase

Supervision is frequently presented as a universal artefact of social work. In the Anglophone world the meaning of its practice is assumed in a conversation about supervision. But what might work well in some contexts might not work elsewhere and questions arise. What difference does culture make? How do educational, regulatory, employment and professional systems influence the practice of supervision? My presentation introduces ideas I have written about in an article shorty to be published in the China Journal of Social Work.I have employed some ideas developed by Houston (2002) and Bourdieu (1989) to explore the idea that ‘one supervision’ might be an impossible construct. Aspects of power, gender, ethnicity, race, cultural and geographical locations, possession of different forms of capital – economic, social, cultural and symbolic, education and managerial barriers all impact on relations in supervision. This paper will explore the literature in an attempt to refine further investigation of the plurality of models of supervision, drawing on examples from the international supervision research.
Here are the slides:
Beddoe Supervision JSWEC
And here’s Harry’s version on my cable cars metaphor. With much appreciation.
Vennings cable cars

Read more soon when my article in the China Journal of Social Work is published. I will add the link as soon as I can.


About socialworknz

I'm a social work researcher in Aotearoa New Zealand
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3 Responses to Supervision: One construct, many practices?

  1. socialworknz says:

    Reblogged this on Supervision in Social Work.

  2. Bernadette Clark says:

    Can anyone see this post after the 2nd cartoon?

    • socialworknz says:

      Hi Bernadette- the post ends with the second cartoon. When I open it on my iPhone it does look a little abrupt but OK on the PC. Thanks for letting me know. I will edit it a little.

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