Theses Doctoral

International aid’s role in Indonesia’s social work professionalization process: a narrative analysis

Setiawan, Dorita

A massive tsunami hit Aceh in December 26, 2004. It was one of the biggest natural disasters of the century. The tsunami’s unprecedented destruction of the area attracted the biggest influx ever of international aid and highlighted the nearly non-existent social service system at local levels. The abundance of international aid served as an impetus for the Indonesian government to review their social service system. This is the first time that resources from international aid in Indonesia were allocated for professionalization of social workers.
This dissertation utilizes a qualitative narrative analysis to explore the questions: How do Indonesian social workers understand and express their experience of the social work professionalization process post-2004 tsunami? How do they interpret the process of professionalization? How do the systems available influence their professional interpretation of the experience and affect their strategies to gain public recognition and resources to claim professional jurisdiction in a society? Interviews were conducted of fifteen Indonesian social workers who were involved in the 2004 tsunami recovery efforts and are still active in the social work professionalization efforts today. The findings show that the international aid and 2004 tsunami in Aceh, Indonesia was the impetus for professionalization of social work in Indonesia. This study explores how Indonesian social workers understand and interpret their experience during the tsunami 2004 recovery efforts using Abbott’s system of professions concepts to frame the professionalization process as impacted by international aid during the 2004 tsunami. The findings revolve around formal public recognition, community sanction and a systematic knowledge base in Indonesia’s social work professionalization process.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Social Work
Thesis Advisors
Burnette, Denise
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
November 9, 2015