Marisa Anconelli Flavia Franzoni Rossella Piccinini

Community work and territorial social work in Emilia-Romagna and in Bologna

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In the last few years, the social policies and the training courses for social workers and educators have again drawn attention to community work and to community development. In this article, the authors describe an experience on this topic carried out in the Municipality of Bologna, in Emilia- Romagna Region. The authors, at first, point out the theoretical references which have inspired the experience described in the article, highlighting the different meanings of community work and community development. Generally, they refer to the construction and to the promotion of social networks and of solidarity relationship, which can turn into reciprocal help and into an active support of collective life. Community work is explicitly referred in the Guide-Lines of the Territorial Social Work of Emilia-Romagna Region in order to define the professional expertise of social workers and educators: they ought to be able to activate community resources and relationships in order to integrate the services and to better meet individual complex needs. The article dwells in particular on a description of a formative laboratory initiative set up by Iress (the Regional Institute of Emilia-Romagna for social and health services, for training and applied research) on behalf of the Municipality of Bologna, in order to support social workers and educators in their the work «in the community and for the community» (as is stated in the very title of the initiative). Therefore, it involves the social workers and educators in defining the organization of the city districts in order to allow them to better deal with community development and reinforce the social services competences in handling the formal and informal community resources.


  • Community Work
  • Community Development
  • Territorial Social Work
  • Social and Solidarity Relationship
  • Emilia-Romagna Region


Article first page

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