May 31-June 2, 2018 / St. Louis, Missouri

Influencing Social Policy: The Next 20 Years!

          Deadline: February 1, 2018

For 20 years, Influencing Social Policy (ISP) has supported social work faculty in their efforts to educate and mobilize students to engage in the policy process. Now it’s time to set the course for the next 20 years!

Policy Conference 2.0 provides a collective space for social work students, faculty, and practitioners with a passion for social policy and policy practice to learn from each other, grapple with complex policy issues, and share research, practice, and teaching wisdom.

The conference encourages submissions for presentations, workshops, roundtables and poster sessions on a broad range of cutting-edge, policy-focused topics.

As we celebrate ISP’s anniversary and collaboratively shape our future, it will be critical to explore how best to preserve and promote policies that reflect social work’s root commitments to anti-racist and anti-oppressive policies and social, economic, and political justice. Submissions that reflect the conference theme, Influencing Social Policy: The Next 20 Years, are especially encouraged.

Proposals may address the current state of policy practice; policy developments of importance to social work; evidence-informed teaching methods; strategies for assessing competency in policy practice; innovative advocacy efforts; or new directions in policy research. To build a strong bridge to the future, we encourage submissions that demonstrate collaboration between micro and macro practice.

This year’s Policy Conference will again include exciting plenary speakers, opportunities for networking, and recognition of the ISP national contest winners. In addition, a special Panel will feature ISP’s founding members.

A full-day Policy Teaching Institute will precede the opening of the Conference on May 31st. Registration for both the Teaching Institute and the Conference is available on the ISP website.

Conference proposals should be submitted electronically. All accepted presenters must be ISP members in good standing at the time of conference registration.


Paper Presentation: 20 minutes plus questions

Presentations that share rigorous conceptual or empirical scholarship related to policy development, policy practice, or policy education. Where relevant, please include:

  • Background & rationale
  • Methodology
  • Results
  • Conclusions & Implications
  • How paper relates to conference theme

Interactive workshop: 1 hour

A skill development session that walks participants through a strategy, task, approach or action related to policy analysis, advocacy, or teaching. Please address:

  • Background & rationale
  • Objectives: Learning outcomes for participants
  • Description of session, including interactive component
  • Evidence of efficacy
  • How workshop relates to conference theme

Roundtable: 1 hour

A facilitated discussion of controversial or challenging issues facing policy instructors, researchers or practitioners. Please address:

  • Background & rationale
  • Objectives: Learning outcomes for participants
  • Session description, including role of facilitator and plan for achieving participation
  • How Roundtable relates to conference theme

Posters: A great opportunity for students!

Visual depiction of a policy analysis, a policy development, an innovative teaching approach, an advocacy effort, or emerging policy research. Where relevant, please include:

  • Background & rationale
  • Methodology
  • Results
  • Conclusions & Implications
  • How poster relates to conference theme