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School of Applied Social Sciences


Maria-Inés Martinez-Herrero

(email at


I have an undergraduate background in Social Work (Complutense University of Madrid) and Psychology (U.N.E.D University in Spain).

After working for two years as a qualified social worker in the Statutory Social Services in Madrid, I decided to come to England to extend my education and start a career as a researcher.

Here, I have gained a MA in Social Research Methods from Durham University (promotion 2010/2011) and I am currently studying for a Phd in Social Work at this same university.

Field of Study

Human Rights and Social Justice in English and Spanish Social Work Education.

My research focuses on human rights and social justice in social work education, in England and Spain. It is framed within the global agenda of International Social Work (hosted by the IASSW, ICSW and IFSW organisations), which promotes human rights and social justice as world-wide unifying themes for the 21st century social work, and assigns a crucial role to social work education as the responsible vehicle for passing on social work knowledge and values to future professionals.

I aim to explore, through this research, the mechanisms used to transmit knowledge and values of human rights and social justice to social work students in these two culturally contrasting European countries, and to develop theoretical and practical tools to support social work educators to embed human rights and social justice in their everyday teaching

Research Interests

  • Human Rights
  • Social Justice
  • Social work education
  • Critical social work
  • International Social Work

Teaching Activities

2012 – 2013: Seminar leader in the module ‘Perspectives on Social Research’ (Level 4) from the Applied Social Sciences department of the University.

Research Groups

  • Policy, Professions and Communities

Teaching Areas

  • 2012: Criminology teaching assistant in the Durham University Supported Progression Summer School. Year 10 and Year 11 students
  • 2012/2013 & 2014/2015: Seminars leader in the module ‘Perspectives on Social Research’ (Level 4). School of Applied Social Sciences.
  • 2014: Guest lecturer in the Master of Social Work. Lecture: "Setting the Context: History and Politics of Social Work. A focus on the social justice / human rights context of social work globally".


Journal Article


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