The Role of Digital Data on Citizens in Social Work Research: A Literature Review: A Literature Review

Lars Bo Andersen, Michael Christensen, Peter Lauritsen, Peter Danholt

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This article presents a scoping review of the existing research on the use of digital data in social work. This review focuses on research that includes empirical investigations of digital data on citizens in social work practices. The purpose of this review is to map the emerging field of research and contribute knowledge of the role of digital data on citizens in social work. This review includes twenty-eight articles published between 2013 and 2020, and concludes that data pervade almost every aspect of social work and that there is a variety of research on the use of data in social work. However, detailed analyses of data that describe and conceptualise the production, circulation and utilisation of data are few. In consequence, this article introduces and discusses concepts from other data-laden fields of research, and calls for further research that addresses the challenges presented by digital data used in social work.
Original languageEnglish
JournalThe British Journal of Social Work
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2023


  • digital data
  • digitisation
  • review
  • social work

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