Johan Lindwall

Universitetslektor, biträdande

Department of Social
Visiting address
Sprängkullsgatan 25
41123 Göteborg
Postal address
Box 720
40530 Göteborg

About Johan Lindwall

I am a social worker and have a master's degree in substance abuse and addiction with a focus on social work. In the autumn of 2020, I defended my thesis in social work, Dilemmas of the imperative for action: on freedom and control in social services' work with clients who use illicit drugs, at the University of Gothenburg. I have previously worked as a professional social worker in the social services with clients who have substance use problems, but also with questions regarding mental disabilities and homelessness.

In my thesis, I analyzed the social services' work with clients who use drugs with a focus on how the imperative for action – to actively promote change and ensure that clients receive the help they need to get away from their drug problems - is understood and staged, as well as how this work is balanced against the principle of autonomy. What do social workers do when they try to influence clients' readiness for change in relation to drug use? What problems and dilemmas do they face? How are the contradictions handled, and how are different attitudes and strategies for action justified when conflicting demands collide? The empirics were collected using qualitative methods such as participatory observations, focus groups and individual interviews with staff at three social offices.

Addiction and substance use is a research field that is of great interest, but also the meeting between client and help system, institutional interaction and issues related to power, control and social exclusion. After my dissertation, I have also become interested in issues related to homelessness as well as crime prevention and security-promoting social work.