Journal Article

Preventing Suicide: A Neglected Social Work Research Agenda

Sean Joe and Danielle Niedermeier

in The British Journal of Social Work

Published on behalf of British Association of Social Workers

Volume 38, issue 3, pages 507-530
Published in print April 2008 | ISSN: 0045-3102
Published online November 2006 | e-ISSN: 1468-263X | DOI:
Preventing Suicide: A Neglected Social Work Research Agenda

Show Summary Details


Social workers encounter suicidal clients; however, little is known about social work’s empirical knowledge base for suicide assessment and treatment. In the first comprehensive study of social work’s contribution to the suicide literature, the authors conducted systematic electronic and manual searches for suicide research published in peer-reviewed journals by social work investigators for the period 1980–2006, with the purpose of ascertaining the state of clinical knowledge related to suicide risk factors and effective treatments. These findings reveal that despite recent increases to the study of suicide by social work researchers, they have contributed limited evidenced-based knowledge in the last twenty-six years on the treatment or prevention of suicide or suicide-related behaviours. The article outlines the risk factors for suicide and discusses the implications for clinical social work practice and research.

Keywords: suicide; clinical knowledge; research; treatment

Journal Article.  10547 words. 

Subjects: Social Work

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