The Center for Innovation in Social Work and Health will be the global leader in elevating social work leadership and cross-sector collaboration to promote health, health equity, and social justice.


The mission of the Center for Innovation in Social Work and Health (CISWH) is to expand the impact of social work in health, public health, and global health in order to reduce health costs, improve outcomes, improve patient experience, promote population health and stimulate health equity nationally and globally. The Center promotes social work leadership in health through inter-professional and trans-disciplinary collaboration with public health, medicine, health economics, technology and other relevant disciplines. The Center accomplishes its mission through outcomes-oriented research, community partnerships, policy development, and education and training activities.


The Center for Innovation in Social Work and Health advances social work leadership in research, education, practice, and policy development to achieve:

  • Effective and efficient integrated healthcare delivery models
  • Innovative prevention and interventions that improve population health
  • Global health partnerships that promote social justice
  • Trans-disciplinary and cross-sector collaborations that generate solutions to complex health challenges
  • Economic analysis of the role of social work in long-term health outcomes


Our capabilities include research, evaluation, technical assistance, training, project implementation, and policy analysis. We actively engage the populations we serve as partners in our work. We are on the front lines of practice, where we can make a real difference.

We partner with a range of collaborators, including consumers, researchers, private and public agencies, academic institutions, community-based organizations, health care providers, and local, state, and federal policy makers. These partnerships take many forms and span a wide range of activities. They enhance our ability to identify gaps in services and systems, and create innovative solutions that improve health care for vulnerable populations.


The Center for Innovation and Social Work will create “common ground” at the intersection of multiple disciplines and sectors consistent with our core values to lead and support innovative collaborations that promote health equity and social justice.

The Center will prioritize initiatives that work to integrate the following domains:

  • Outcomes-oriented research;
  • Practice and community partnerships;
  • Education and training; and
  • Policy development and advocacy
The Center will allocate its resources in support of the following strategies:
  • Engage and develop social work leaders who integrate the Center’s strategies in order to improve population health
  • Expose and dismantle systems of oppression based on race, ethnicity, gender, class and other inequities relevant to health
  • Address social determinants of health, in order to make a meaningful difference in people’s lives, particularly vulnerable populations
  • Foster innovative, multi-sectoral collaborations among social work, public health and other disciplines; and with community partners
  • Use trans-disciplinary organizational models that promote responsiveness, flexibility and community engagement