Call For Proposals Is NOW OPEN For the 30th Annual Management Conference

NSWM Annual Conference
Star Symbol


30th Annual Management Conference

This year’s theme, “Accelerating Impact: Harnessing the power of human, social, and financial innovation,” focuses on leveraging innovation across multiple areas to increase the impact of services for underserved populations.

Innovations in human, social and financial approaches to how our organizations are structured and function are essential to solving pressing social issues. The conference provides a forum for participants to learn about innovations in these realms and to network with each other to link innovations in creative ways. Such generative interaction moves us towards more socially just practice and increases the impact of organizations.

The key thematic areas for the 2019 NSWM conference are summarized in the table below, with the critical fourth dimension of “measuring impact” included. Impact is an often-used but rarely defined term. As practitioners, scholars, policy-makers, and funders, we want our innovations to make an impact, but how do we know whether they are? What is impact, who defines it, and how is it measured? This fourth thematic area provides room for critical discussion about measuring impact as human, social, and financial innovations are implemented.

  • Strengthening interpersonal skills
  • Developing analytical and critical thinking skills
  • Promoting professional behavior and management skills
  • Cultivating stakeholder relationships
  • Impactful communication skills
  • Promoting cultural humility
  • Advocating for social justice
  • Facilitating innovative leadership and organizational change
  • Integrating interprofessional practice
  • Initiating creative solutions to social problems
  • Utilizing strong marketing campaigns and public relations
  • Designs and develops effective programs in a participatory process
  • Manages risk and legal affairs
  • Improving strategic planning
  • Responsive business practices
  • Harnessing technology for social change
  • Cultivating innovative and environmentally responsive partnerships
  • Navigate ever-changing funding streams and priorities
  • Managing human resources for capital gain
  • Creative budgeting and allocation of financial resources
  • Balancing transparency, protection and accountability
  • Manages all aspects of information technology
  • Strategic fundraising and sustainability planning
  • Cultivating a data driven culture
  • Harnessing technology to facilitate measurement
  • Defining impact
  • Developing metrics through participatory processes
  • Exploring range of impact measuring prevention)
  • Communicating impact assessments to multiple audiences
  • Efficiency versus effectiveness
  • Power dynamics in measuring impact
  • Utilizing metrics to impact social change
Star Symbol


Conference sub-themes represent the domains of The Network for Social Work Management’s human services management competencies.


Proposals related to leadership practices, including creating organizational mission and vision, advocacy, coalition building, boards and governance, financial and business planning, resource development, fundraising, crisis management, conflict management, ethics in leadership, mentoring, creating diverse and culturally competent organizations and decision-making. Proposals that support leadership and innovation in transforming organizations are encouraged.


Proposals related to strategic management, including organizational planning or culture, organizational and board leadership, fundraising, succession planning, programs, or measuring impact (evaluation). Topics may encompass a broad array of skills and competencies related to marketing, public relations, social media, communications, public policy, advocacy, data, crisis and risk management or technology.


Proposals related to resource management and financial management. Topics may encompass a broad array of skills and competencies including performance or talent management, employee engagement, productivity, efficiency, efficacy, retention, diversity, employee rights, benefits, security and safety, workplace culture, technology (hardware/software, tools), management.


Participatory engagement of stakeholders, linkages and collaborative relationships with, community based providers and partners, are essential components of ensuring the success of service to individuals, programs and providers.  Recognizing the critical role of social work managers in effective advocacy, various policy practices, civic engagement, and stakeholder mobilization proposals may relate to collaboration among agencies, faith institutions, corporate partners, academia and the community-at-large.

Proposal Submission Instructions

All proposal submissions should be 500 words maximum with an abstract of 50-100 words.  Presenter contact information including credentials, workshop title, aims, objectives (e.g., knowledge or skills outcomes), and optimal number of participants must be included and are not included in the word counts. All accepted presenters must submit electronic material such as PowerPoint Slides or a paper before the conference.

Given the limited number of presentation slots and the desire to promote collaborative participation, we highly recommend proposals (e.g., workshops, papers) that include more than one presenter/author.

Each proposal must indicate the following: 
Sub-theme (choose one): Leadership, Strategic Management, Resource Management, or Community Collaboration.

Audience Track (choose targeted audience levels/tracks): Aspiring & Emerging, Middle & Senior, or Executive.

Proposals are invited in the formats Proposals are invited in the formats listed below:

60-Minute Workshops: Workshops are designed to introduce the audience to strategies, methods, skills, or practice orientations. Workshops may include demonstrations and time for skill practice and acquisition.

60-Minute Panels: Panelists present a series of up to three papers focused on a common theme exploring multiple perspectives and experts. The panel is organized by a primary presenter who will introduce the topic and panelists. Each panelist must submit an abstract (as described above) for their topic, including the names of other panel members.

Individual 20-Minute Presentations of a Paper: These are 15-minute presentations allowing for 5 additional minutes for questions and discussion. Presentations on similar topics will be paired so each session will include two individual presentations.

In your proposal application, please indicate if you are willing to present your material as a poster presentation if it is not accepted for a session presentation.

Poster Presentations: Poster sessions will occur at scheduled times, with the authors present to discuss their work. Posters will also be available for viewing at other times during the conference.


NOTIFICATIONS of acceptance will be made by February 20, 2019. All selected presenters will need to confirm acceptance, register for the conference, and submit a résumé or curriculum vitae by March 20, 2019.

2019 Program Co-Chairs
  • Michael P. Dentato, Ph.D.
  • Associate Professor, Loyola University Chicago, School of Social Work
  • Maria V. Wathen, LCSW, Ph.D.
  • Assistant Professor, Loyola University Chicago, School of Social Work
2019 Conference Chairs
  • Goutham Menon, Ph.D.
  • Dean, Loyola University Chicago, School of Social Work
  • Seth Green, JD
  • Director, Baumhart Center, Loyola University Chicago