2018-2020: "SWaPOL -Social Work and Policing"

EU-Project funded by ERASMUS+ Strategic Partnerships in Vocational Training

Duration: Nov. 2018 - Oct. 2020

Project-Website: coming soon



Traditionally, public space is managed by the public authorities, carried out by the police as the dominant body of public safety. However, in the course of administrative reforms, more and more stakeholders with different intentions participate in the governance of public order. Among them there are associations of social work. With their emphasis on the promotion of health and care they represent the counterpart to the executive body of the police. For a coherent and consensual cooperation internal reforms on each side are needed.

The Training Package in Social Work and Policing, consisting of 3 modules, is the core output of our project. After consultation with project partners we will develop a 2+3 days training package to be tested, evaluated and implemented in partner institutions.

The package shall provide training institutions with a basic grid for definition and discussion of major themes at the intersection between the two professional groups, supplemented and supported by teaching material such as manuals and documentary material of best practice examples in the partner countries. In addition to conventional teaching aids (handbook) the teaching and training package will consider the development of instruments for multi-media teaching (training videos, footage of case studies) and practical exercises (role-play, excursions, field trips).

This training is trans-disciplinary and bridges the gap between social workers and police. Traditionally, there is a strong antagonism between the two professional groups. We consider our efforts as vital to foster exchange, transparency, mutual trust and sharing responsibilities between these professionals, and we expect a positive effect for marginalised people in the streets.


Project Partners:

  1. European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research (Co-ordinator)
  2. University College Gent (HoGent) - Belgium
  3. FH Joanneum Gesellschaft MBH (FHJ) - Austria
  4. Camara Municipal de Lisboa - The Lisbon Municipal Police (LMP) - Portugal
  5. Universidade de Porto (U.Porto) - Portugal

Associated Partners:

  • Department for Crime Prevention in the Vienna Police (Landespolizeidirektion Wien)
  • The Innovation Centre for Security at Ghent University
  • Paulo Police Academy Ghent
  • Higher School for Education at the Polytechnic Institute of Porto

2017-2019: "EPPIC - Exchanging Prevention Practices on Polydrug Use among Youth in Criminal Justice Systems"

EU-Project funded by the European Commission Health Unit

Duration: January 1st 2017 – December 31st 2019

Project-Webpage: www.eppic-project.eu/



Young offenders are considered one of the most vulnerable or at risk groups of developing drug problems and they are likely to be affected by a myriad of health and social inequalities.

EPPIC focuses on drugs prevention policy and practice for young people aged between 15 and 24 who have been in contact with the criminal justice system. We will identify innovative prevention projects, collect new information and examine the views of young people and service providers on prevention approaches for this target group.

EPPIC will cover research on prevention programmes in prison settings as well as forms of restorative justice such as diversion and therapy in six European countries: UK, Italy, Denmark, Poland, Germany and Austria.


Project Partners:

  • European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research Vienna (Austria)
  • Aarhus University (Denmark)
  • Change-Grow-Live (UK)
  • Drug and Alcohol Research centre, Middlesex Univerity (UK) 
  • Eclectica Research (Italy)
  • Institute of Addiction Research, University of Applied Sciences Frankfurt (Germany)
  • Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology Warsaw (Poland)

The Project...

  • … addresses issues of health, healthy environments, and social inequality of a vulnerable group of young people (those in touch with criminal justice systems) who are at greater risk than their contemporaries of developing problem drug use, including polydrug use and use of NPS.
  • … identifies and describes drug using trajectories of the target group and key intervention points to facilitate prevention and intervention efforts and to promote healthier lifestyles.
  • … identifies and develops tools (e.g. guidelines for quality assurance) and mechanisms (e.g. Criminal Justice Practitioner Forum) to facilitate the implementation of ‘best practice’ approaches in EU member states.
  • … facilitates the exchange of knowledge across partner countries and across other EU member states (research based and experiential knowledge, shared and jointly developed)