Merlinda Weinberg



Phone: 902-494-6356
Fax: 902-494-6709
Mailing Address: 
School of Social Work
Dalhousie University
Suite 3232, Mona Campbell Building,
1459 LeMarchant Street
PO Box 15000 Halifax, Nova Scotia B3H 4R2
Research Topics:
  • Ethics in the helping professions
  • Critical post-structural feminist theory
  • Qualitative research
  • Gender
  • Discourse analysis
  • Difference and identity
  • Racism and ethics in human services


  • BA, University of Toronto
  • MSW, Smith College
  • PhD, University of Toronto/OISE


Currently Dr. Merlinda Weinberg is a full professor in the School of Social Work at Dalhousie University. Dr. Weinberg received her MSW from Smith College in the United States. She practiced social work in Canada and the United States as a front-line worker, manager, and consultant for over 25 years. During that period, her area of practice was children’s mental health: working with children, youth and their families. Dr. Weinberg also had a private practice in which she provided consultation to social service agencies and direct clinical intervention to individuals, families and couples.

In 2004, Dr. Weinberg received her PhD at the University of Toronto in the Sociology and Equity Studies in Education Department at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education. Before coming to Dalhousie, Dr. Weinberg taught at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles and Carleton University in Ottawa. She has two fabulous adult children who have taught her, amongst many things, the skill of listening and the characteristic of humility.

For more information on Dr. Weinberg's research, visit her website.


Refereed Journal Articles 

  • Weinberg, M. (2021). Exacerbation of inequities during COVID-19: Ethical implications for social workers. Canadian Social Work Review, 37 (2), 9-15. (In press)
  • Weinberg, M. & Fine, M. (2020). Racisms and Microaggressions in Social Work: The Experience of Racialized Practitioners in Canada. Journal of Ethnic & Cultural Diversity in Social Work. 
  • Banks, S., Cai, T., de Jonge, E., Shears, J., Shum, M., Sobočan, A. M., Strom, K., Truell, R. Úriz, M. J. & Weinberg, M.  (2020). Ethical challenges for social workers during COVID-19. A global perspective. Rheinfelden, Switzerland: International Federation of Social Work, ISBN 978-3-906820-21-7. 
  • Beagan, B., Mohamed, T., Brooks, K, Waterfield, B. & Weinberg, M. (2020). Microaggressions experienced by LGBTQ academics in Canada: “just not fitting in…it does take a toll.” International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, published on-line,
  • Sobočan, A. M., Banks, S., Bertotti, T., de Jonge, E., Gottfried, K. S. & Weinberg, M. (2020). In conversation with a case story: Perspectives on professionalism, identity and ethics in social work. Ethics and Social Welfare, published on-line forthcoming. (This piece has gone into the practice section of the journal and while it has been reviewed by the editors, did not go through an additional anonymous review process).
  • Weinberg, M. & Banks, S. (2019). Practising ethically in unethical times: Everyday resistance in social work. Ethics and Social Welfare, published on-line April 17/19, 1-19. 
  • Weinberg, M. (2018). The politics of ethics in human services: Duelling discourses. Ethics & Behavior. 28(6), pp. 497-509.
  • Weinberg, M. (2017). Paradox and Trespass: Possibilities for Ethical Practice in Times of Austerity. Ethics and Social Welfare. On-line.
  • Weinberg, M. (2017). Critical Approaches to Ethics in Social Work: Kaleidoscope not Bleach. Social Alternatives, 35(4), pp. 85-89.
  • Waterfield, B., Beagan, B.B., & Weinberg, M. (2017). Disabled academics: A case study in Canadian Universities. Disability & Society.
  • Weinberg, M. (2015). Professional privilege, ethics and pedagogy. Ethics and Social Welfare. 9(3), 225-239.
  • Weinberg, M. & Taylor, S. (2014). ‘Rogue’ Social Workers: The Problem with Rules for Ethical Behaviour. Critical Social Work, 15(1), 74-86. 
  • Weinberg, M. (2014). The ideological dilemma of subordination of self vs. self-care: Identity construction of the ‘ethical social worker.’ Discourse and Society, 25(1), 84-99.
  • Weinberg, M. & Campbell, C. (2014). From codes to contextual collaborations. Shifting the thinking about ethics in social work. Journal of Progressive Human Services, 25, 37-49.
  • Weinberg, M. (2010). Seeking an ethical life. “Justice, justice, shalt thou pursue.” Canadian Social Work Review. 27(1), 133-137. Invited.
  • Weinberg, M. (2010). The social construction of social work ethics: Politicizing and broadening the lens. Journal of Progressive HumanServices, Vol. 21(1), 32-44.
  • Weinberg, M. (2009). Moral distress: A missing but relevant concept for ethics in social work. Canadian Social Work Review. 26(2), 139-152.
  • Weinberg, M. (2008). Structural social work: A moral compass for ethics in practice. Critical Social Work, 9(1).
  • Weinberg, M. (2006). Pregnant with possibility: The paradoxes of "help" as anti-oppression and discipline with a young single mother. Families in Society, April-June, 87(2), 161-169.
  • Weinberg, M. (2005). A case for an expanded framework of ethics in practice. Ethics and Behavior, Vol.15(4), 327-338.
  • Weinberg, M. (2005). The mother menagerie: Animal metaphors in the social work relationship with young single mothers. Critical SocialWork, 6(1).
  • Weinberg, M. (2004). Young single mothers: The work of proving fitness for parenting. Journal for the Association of Research onMothering, Fall/Winter 6(2), 79-89.

Book Chapters

  • Weinberg, M. (2019). Critical Clinical Ethics. In C. Brown & J. Macdonald (Eds.) Critical clinical social work. Counterstorying for social justice. Toronto: Canadian Scholars’ Press.
  • Weinberg, M. (2017). New tools for ethical practice in an era of fiscal restraint. In E. Spencer, D. Massing & J. Gough. Social work ethics: Progressive, practical and relational approaches, pp. 69-83. Don Mills, Ontario: Oxford University Press.
  • Weinberg, M. (2013). Situating and politicising ethics in social work.  In I. Ferguson & M. Lavalette (Series Eds.). Critical and Radical Debates in Social Work: S. Banks. Ethics, Bristol, UK: Policy Press. 
  • Weinberg, M. (2007).Ethical “use of self.” The complexity of multiple selves in clinical practice. In D. Mandell (Ed.) Revisiting the Use of Self: Questioning Professional Identities (pp. 213-233). Toronto: Canadian Scholars Press. 
  • Weinberg, M. (2002). Biting the Hand that Feeds You and Other Feminist Research Dilemmas. In W. C. Van den Hoonard (Ed.) Walking the tightrope: Ethical issues for qualitative researchers (pp. 79-94). Toronto: University of Toronto Press. 
  • Anamoor, A. & Weinberg, M. (2000). Fighting Shame. A Somali Single Teen Mother in Canada. In S. A. Inness (Ed.) Running for their lives. Girls, cultural identity, and stories of survival (pp. 97-112).  Lanham, Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield. 


Research Projects

  • 2020: Co-Investigator: Dr. Merlinda Weinberg, “Ethical Challenges for Social Workers During COVID-19.” Principal Investigator: Dr. Sarah Banks. Durham University, Durham, United Kingdom.
  • 2017: Principle Investigator: Dr. Merlinda Weinberg, “Towards a critical, contextualized ethics for social work.” Supplemental Sabbatical/Special Leave Grant, $4,351.15.
  • 2015: Principle Investigator: Dr. Merlinda Weinberg, “European Conferences & Research Development.” Research Development Funds, $1,000.
  • 2014-2018: Co-Investigator: Merlinda Weinberg; “Processes of Inclusion and Exclusion. The experience of ‘minority’ professionals in law, social work and academia.” Principle Applicant: Brenda Beagan; SSHRC 3 year General Research Grant, $165,600.
  • 2012-13: Principle Investigator. “Ethics in International Social Work Practice.” Principle Applicant: Merlinda Weinberg; Supplemental Dalhousie Grant, $6,224.
  • 2012-13: Principle Investigator. “Discourse Analysis Development.” Principle Applicant: Merlinda Weinberg; Research Enterprise Development Initiative Grant, Nova Scotia Health Research Foundation, $2,000.
  • 2009-2012: Principle Investigator.“Ethics in Social Work Practice.” Principle applicant: Merlinda Weinberg;  SSHRC 3 year General Research Grant for $219,929.
  • 2007-2009: Principle Investigator. “Structural Barriers. Impact on Ethics for Social Work Practice.”  Principle applicant: Merlinda Weinberg,  Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia;  Dalhousie Research Development Grant for $5,000.

Awards & Honours

  • 2017, Senior Fellowship, approximately $40,000
    Durham International Fellowships for Research and Enterprise Scheme, Durham University, United Kingdom.
  • 2009, Finalist for the Aurora Prize, as the top new academic in Canada, awarded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.

Interviews as an Expert that resulted in Publications

  • Janssen, J. S. (May/June 2016). Moral distress in social work practice. Social Work Today, 16(3), 19-22.