Articles & Special Issues Environment & Social Development

Social Responses to a Changing Environment

From severe weather to rising of sea levels, the effects of environmental changes have profound implications for communities and daily life, especially the communities and experiences of vulnerable populations. What structures and strategies can be deployed to meet the human needs emerging from such changes?

In this Encyclopedia of Social Work article, Lisa Reyes Mason, Susan P. Kemp, Lawrence A. Palinkas and Amy Krings discuss a framework for conceptualizing social responses and strategies for implementing them. They also examine the potential contributions of social workers in crafting and executing “more transformative, equitable, and locally relevant responses to environmental threats.” Creating social responses to a changing environment has been identified as one of the grand challenges for social work.

Project: Environment and Social Development


Mason, L. R., Kemp, S. P., Palinkas, L. A., & Krings, A. (2021). Social responses to a changing environment. In C. Franklin (Ed.), Encyclopedia of social work. National Association of Social Workers & Oxford University Press.