Gathering and sharing information about social work in the pandemic

About the research project
In order to understand more about the challenges, changes and responses to the COVID-19 pandemic in social work, SWS is carrying out research in partnership with Iriss. The project is expected to run until the end of 2020.

Research activity will involve SWS gathering and passing on information from a range of sources (see below) with Iriss undertaking analysis and producing a series of outputs.

The purpose of the research is to provide social work leaders, SWS membership and other key stakeholders with further insight on the impacts of the pandemic on the profession and shine a light on the role of social work during this time of crisis. It is also anticipated that the research provides evidence that can be used for further reflection to inform future policy and practice development.

We are asking all relevant parties to opt-in to consent to the below information sharing policy via the consent form, which can be found here (or via the button below).

This page explains how Social Work Scotland (SWS) collects and shares any information you provide to us with the Institute for Research into Social Services (Iriss), for the purposes of the COVID-19 research project, and how we handle your information.

To download this page as an information sheet, please click here (PDF).

What kind of information will SWS collect and share with Iriss?
Information deemed relevant by SWS for this research project will include: meeting notes or minutes from our Standing Committees and Subgroups, emails, survey responses, phone calls and/or meeting papers. Before sharing any information with Iriss, SWS will remove any personal identifiers.

Your information will always be treated in accordance with the provisions of relevant data protection legislation, including the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This agreement runs alongside Social Work Scotland’s standard Privacy Policy, which can be found on the SWS website here.

How will SWS process personal identifiers and share information with Iriss?
Iriss and Social Work Scotland have developed a secure online form which SWS will use to record and then share any relevant information anonymously with Iriss project managers leading the research. We will anonymise information we share by removing references to locations, names, roles and any direct references which might identify you (as relevant).

However, there may be instances where the nature of the information needs to include  your role, the nature of your input, or your geographical location to be relevant, and it is possible you may be identifiable. If this is the case, SWS will contact you for a discussion about whether you give further permission for this information to be used.

As Iriss is a non-public authority organisation (these include charities and commercial research organisations), information will be collected by SWS and shared with Iriss under the lawful basis of ‘legitimate interests’ for processing personal data for research. More information on ‘legitimate interests’ can be found on the Information Commissioner’s Officer website here.

 How long will Iriss keep the information shared by SWS?
Iriss will keep the information shared by SWS only as long as it is required to fulfil the purposes of the research as described above and will not keep any information for longer than 1 year after the project has finished.

Social Work Scotland will take all reasonable technical and organisational precautions to prevent the loss, misuse or alteration of your personal information.

We are asking all relevant parties to opt-in to consent to above information sharing policy via the consent form, which can be found here (or via the button below).

You are entitled to view, amend, or delete the personal information that Social Work Scotland holds. You are also entitled to retract your consent after you have agreed.

Please contact Corinne Groeneveldt at with any data access or consent update request.

Consent Form