The Helen Bader School of Social Welfare at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee has an extensive cross-disciplinary research program. The school serves students with interests in social work and/or criminal justice and offers the only criminal justice PhD program in the state of Wisconsin.

Research conducted by faculty often involves multidisciplinary collaboration through partnerships with researchers on campus and nationwide. The Department of Social Work includes thirteen faculty who are tenured-tenure track and eight clinical faculty members. The Department of Criminal Justice & Criminology includes nine faculty who are tenured-tenure track and one lecturer.

Extramural funding at the school is close to $7 million annually. All faculty have access to the Shared Office for the Administration of Research (SOAR). SOAR assists faculty with applying for and managing sponsored funding. HBSSW provides this administrative infrastructure to support faculty in their pursuit of interdisciplinary, scientifically rigorous social and behavioral research.

Active Funded Projects

InvestigatorsProject TitleFunding AgencyProject Period
Tina FreiburgerAssessment of Performance Measures for MCADTCSAMHSA5/31/19-
Tina Freiburger; Co-PI: Melinda S. KavanaughSystem of Care (SOC) Expansion and Sustainability Evaluation and Infrastructure Development: Milwaukee WraparoundMilwaukee County, SAMHSA8/31/19-
Tina FreiburgerSystem-Level Diversion ProjectWaukesha County CJCC10/1/18-
Colleen GalambosUniv of Wisconsin- Milwaukee Bader (Helen) Foundation7/1/2019-
Colleen Janczewski;
Co-Investigator: Joshua Mersky
The Community Response and Prevention Social Work EvaluationGreater Watertown Community Health Foundation1/1/19-
Melinda S. KavanaughYoung caregivers, 24-hour rest-activity rhythm: An Ecological momentary assessment study.The ALS Association2020-2021
Melinda S. KavanaughClinical research award, National Institutes for Health, Loan Repayment Program (LRP)Eunice Shriver Institute for Child Health and Development (NICHD)2019-2021
Melinda S. KavanaughRedesign of the Psychiatric Crisis Service System of Care (SOC) for Youth and Young Adults in Milwaukee County The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration2018-2022
Melinda S. Kavanaugh; Co-Investigator: Yura LeeFortaleciendo Puentes: A Community-Based Continuum of Dementia Capable Care for LatinosUnited Community Center/Dept Health and Human Services/Administration for Community Living9/30/18-
Yura LeeExploring the Bio-Psycho-Social Mechanisms of Widowhood and Cognitive Function among U.S. Asian Older AdultsRutgers University Asian Resource Centers for Minority Aging Research Center under NIH/NIA P30 7/1/2020-
Steve McMurtry; Susan RoseTitle IV-E Child Welfare Training Program
Joshua Mersky; Co-Investigator: Colleen JanczewskiFamily Foundations Home Visiting Program EvaluationWI Department of Children and Families/U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, HRSA10/1/19-
Joshua MerskyRacine Elevates All Children's Health (REACH)State of Wisconsin Child Abuse and Neglect Board
Joshua Mersky; Co-Investigator: Danielle Romain DagenhardtGrants to Expand Substance Abuse Treatment Capacity in Family Treatment Drug CourtsMilwaukee County Behavioral Health Division / SAMHSA10/1/17-
David J. Pate Jr.Sullivan Spaights Endowment FundUW-Milwaukee Foundation9/1/14-
James Topitzes; Co-Investigators:Joshua Mersky; David J. Pate Jr.Healthy Worker, Healthy WisconsinUW-Madison (WPP)1/1/17-
James TopitzesTrauma-Informed EmploymentUW-Milwaukee Foundation / Bader Foundation1/1/19-
James Topitzes; Joshua MerskyFamily-Centered Systems: A Two Generation StrategyHigher Expectations for Racine County / Strive Together 10/1/18-