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World Class Educators and Researchers

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Michael Reisch

Teachers, Researchers, and Mentors


Dr. Michael Reisch, Daniel Thursz Distinguished Professor of Social Justice

Michael Reisch is the Daniel Thursz Distinguished Professor of Social Justice at the University of Maryland and one of the leading and most respected social work scholars and educators in the U.S. He has held faculty and administrative positions at the University of Michigan, the University of Pennsylvania, San Francisco State University, and SUNY Stony Brook, and was a visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley, the New Bulgarian University in Sofia and, as a Fulbright Senior Scholar, at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia.

A former Woodrow Wilson Fellow and Fulbright Senior Scholar, Professor Reisch is the author or editor of over 25 books and monographs, over 100 articles and book chapters, and over 300 papers at state, national, and international conferences on the history and philosophy of social welfare, the impact of globalization on the future of the welfare state, the relationship of social justice and multiculturalism to social policy and social work practice, radical social work, community organization theory and practice, the nonprofit sector, and contemporary policy issues, particularly welfare reform. His most recent books include Social Policy and Social Justice (Sage Publications); Social Work Practice and Social Justice: Concepts, Challenges, and Strategies (forthcoming from Oxford University Press) class="normal"; The Handbook of Community Practice (Sage Publications), class="normal"and The International Handbook of Social Justice (forthcoming from Routledge) class="normal".  His work has been translated into Bulgarian, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Russian, and Spanish, and he has lectured widely in Asia, Australia, Europe, and Latin America.

Professor Reisch has also played a leadership role in national and state advocacy, professional, and social change organizations that focused on the needs of low-income children and families, welfare recipients, and unemployed or homeless persons.  He has directed or consulted on political campaigns at the federal, state, and local levels in four states and been honored for his work by numerous local and national nonprofit organizations, professional associations, and universities including the Maryland General Assembly, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, and the National Association of Social Workers.  He is currently on the editorial boards of five professional journals.  Professor Reisch teaches courses in the MSW program on social policy, macro practice, and social work values and ethics, in the PhD program on social theory, and in both programs on the application of the concepts of equality and social justice to social policy and social work practice.

Contact Information:
Phone: (410) 706.5088
Room: 3W02

Mailing Information:
UM School of Social Work
525 West Redwood Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21201

MSW, Hunter College
MA; PhD, SUNY-Binghamton

Expertise and Research Interests:
Social Justice
Welfare Reform
Social Welfare

Recent Publications:
Reisch, M., Jani, Jayshree. (2012). The New Politics of Social Work Practice: Understanding Context to Promote Change. British Journal of Social Work, 42(5), 1-19.

Reisch, M. and Staller, K. (2011). “Teaching Social Welfare History and Social Welfare Policy from a Conflict Perspective,” Journal of Teaching in Social Work.

Reisch, M. (2010). “Social Work in the U.S.A.,” in H.-U. Otto (ed.), Social Work Handbook, Weinheim, Germany: Juventa.

Jani, J. S. and Reisch, M. (2010). “Common Human Needs, Uncommon Solutions: Applying a Critical Framework to Perspectives on Human Behavior,” Families in Society.

Reisch, M. (2010). “United States: Social Welfare Policy and Privatization in Post-Industrial Society,” in J. L. Powell & J. Hendricks (eds.), The Welfare State in Post-Industrial Society: A Global Perspective, New York: Springer Publishing Company.

Reisch, M. (2010). “Defining Social Justice in a Socially Unjust World,” and “Teaching About Social Justice Through a Multi-Media Format,” in J. M. Bierkenmaier, A. Cruce, J. Curley, E. Burkemper, R. J. Wilson, & J. J. Stretch (eds.), Educating for Social Justice: Transformative Experiential Learning, Chicago: Lyceum Books.

Reisch, M. (2009). “Social Workers, Unions, and Low Wage Workers: An Historical Perspective,” Journal of Community Practice, 17(1-2), 50-72.

Reisch, M. (2008). “The Democratic Premise: The Impact of German Jewish Immigration on Social Work in the United States,” Yearbook of the Leo Baeck Institute, London.

Reisch, M. (2008). "From Melting Pot to Multiculturalism: The Impact of Racial and Ethnic Diversity on Social Work & Social Justice in the U.S.," British Journal of Social Work, 38(4), 788-804.

McDonald, C. and Reisch, M. (2008). "Social Work in the Workfare Regime: A Comparison of the U.S. and Australia," Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare, 35(1), 43-74.

Reisch, M. (2008). "Soziale Arbeit im Angesicht der Globalizierung," in Fabian Kessl and Hans-Uwe Otto (Eds.), Soziale Arbeit jenseits desWohlfahrtsstaats: Zeitdiagnosen, Problematisierungen und Perspektiven, Juventa.

Reisch, M. (2008). "Legislative Advocacy to Empower Oppressed and Vulnerable Groups," in Albert R. Roberts (Ed.), Social Workers' Desk Reference, 2nd ed., New York: Oxford University Press.

Reisch, M., (2008). "Social Policy and the Great Society," in James Midgley, Martin Tracy, and Michelle Livermore (Eds.), Handbook of Social Policy, revised ed., Newbury Park: Sage Publications.

Reisch, M. (2008). "Social Movements," in Terry Mizrahi and Larry Davis (Eds.), Encyclopedia of Social Work, 20th ed., Washington, DC: National Association of Social Workers.

Reisch, M. (2008). "Not by the Numbers Alone: The Effects of Economic and Demographic Changes on Social Policy," in Ira Colby, Diane Sowers and Catherine Dulmus (Eds.), The Comprehensive Handbook of Social Work and Social Welfare, volume 4 (pp. 81-101), New York: John Wiley and Sons.

Reisch, M. (2008). "Intervention with Communities,"in William Rowe, Lisa A. Rapp-Paglicci, Diane Sowers and Catherine Dulmus (Eds.), The Comprehensive Handbook of Social Work and Social Welfare, volume 3, (pp. 505-532), New York: John Wiley and Sons.

Reisch, M. (2007). "Social Justice and Multiculturalism: Persistent Tensions in the History of U.S. Social Welfare and Social Work," Studies in Social Justice, 1(1), 67-92.

Reisch, M. and Guyet, D. (2007). "Communities as 'Big Small Groups': Culture and Social Capital," in Ram Cnaan and Carl Milofsky (Eds.), Handbook of Communities and Organizations, New York: Springer.

Reisch, M. (2007). "Constructing a Socially Just System of Social Welfare in a Multicultural Society: The U.S. Experience," in Human Rights and Social Justice: Rethinking Social Welfare's Mission (pp. 133-161), Seoul: Korean Academy of Social Welfare.

Reisch, M. (2005). "Welfare Reform and the Transformation of the U.S. Welfare State," in Keith Kilty and Elizabeth Segal (Eds.), The Promise of Welfare Reform: Results or Rhetoric? (pp. 69-80), New York: Haworth Press.

Reisch, M. (2005). "American Exceptionalism and Critical Social Work: A Retrospective and Prospective Analysis," in Iain Ferguson, Michael Lavalette and Elizabeth Whitman (Eds.), Globalisation, Global Justice and Social Work (pp. 157-171), London: Routledge.

Reisch, M. (2004). "Radical Community Organizing" and "Community Practice Challenges in the Global Economy" in Marie Weil, Michael Reisch, Audrey Johnson, Lorraine Gutierrez, and Dorothy Gamble (Eds.), Handbook of Community Practice (pp. 287-304, 529-547), Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications.

Marie Weil, Michael Reisch, Audrey Johnson, Lorraine Gutierrez, and Dorothy Gamble (Eds.), Handbook of Community Practice, Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications.