Biographical Statement


Marion Brown has been a licensed social worker since 1990. She earned her BSW and MSW from Dalhousie University and her PhD in social work from Memorial University of Newfoundland, both in Canada. Marion began teaching at the Dalhousie School of Social Work in Nova Scotia, Canada, in 2002. Her research and community work focusses on internationalizing curriculum, transnational migration of social workers, health equity, sexualized violence, youth in child welfare care, and professional identity. Marion is a founding member and Board Chair of the North End Opportunities Fund, a grassroots non-profit that facilitates equity and inclusion for young people to pursue their interests and talents. 

Marion has worked in a variety of settings including community based non-profit programs, clinical counselling practice, and assessment services, in roles from frontline to supervisory. Her practice has focused on issues related to community responses to youth in care and their families on levels both individual and systemic.  At Dalhousie, Marion has been the Undergraduate Program Coordinator for seven years, a role that oversees curriculum and policy development and revision; recruitment, orientation, accommodations, retention, and advising of all campus and distance students; sessional and new faculty orientation, mentorship and support; and interprofessional education. (199 words)

Marion Brown: Vision for IASSW

I am eager to contribute to internationalizing curriculum, practica, and policy in social work education, research, and practice.  My research activity regarding internationalizing field placements and transnational migration of social workers to Canada has led to this prioritizing.  I am energized to collaborate with colleagues across the world in this work, and I believe I have a compelling track record to position myself for a role on the IASSW Board.  For five years I was in a role designated to Field Education Research, wherein I developed formal linkages with 13 universities in 10 countries and five social service agencies in five countries, developing mutual interests in placements and research opportunities. I was also part of a Canada – EU team successful in securing a transatlantic mobility grant to investigate dynamics of citizenship and diversity in international social work placements. Through these experiences I developed skills in contract negotiations across cultures and learned about tensions and possibilities of internationalizing curricula. I’ve also been a leader in a Canadian team that has built a research program in the mobilization of social workers across borders, wherein we drew upon the IASSW/IFSW Global Definition for Social Work, the Global Standards for Social Work Education, and the Statement of Ethical Principles for grounding and guidance.

Working with students to travel internationally required the development of a robust pre-departure program including conceptual, philosophical, personal and values-based reflections that grapple with ongoing legacies of imperialism and colonialism. The pre-departure and post-return seminar discussions as well as in situ reflective journals drew upon rich pedagogical processes for unpacking deeply rooted biases and processing, revising, and re-committing to aspirations of a global humanity.

Issues of social justice know no borders and there are no singular paths forward.  Our profession needs the multiple perspectives of citizens and social workers across the globe to learn from one another and build coalitions to address the challenges that abound, from the personal to the political, from the micro to the macro.  I believe the IASSW’s leadership is well established and positioned in global social work and I am energized to contribute to the ongoing work.

I am organized and diligent in attending to organizational and communication detail and commit to the expectations of a role on the IASSW Board as Member-at-Large.