Tata Institute of Social Sciences
Mumbai | Tuljapur | Guwahati | Hyderabad

The School of Social Work promotes education in social work that is democratic, emancipatory, and egalitarian and one that develops a critical perspective in students. It offers dynamic and relevant programmes at the Doctoral, Master’s and Certificate levels. It also identifies new areas for social work practice and evolves innovative strategies through practice-based research and field action projects. Other thrust areas of the School are research, networking and liaisoning with governmental and non-governmental organisations for capacity building, policy and programme development, and extension.

Our Legacy

Our School has a proud legacy of leadership and innovation in pioneering Social Work Education in India and South Asia.
We are the first School of Social Work to be established in South Asia in the year 1936.
Our approach to social work education strives towards inculcating democratic, emancipatory, and egalitarian values among students.
We have the nation’s best post-graduate and doctoral programme in Social Work.
Our pedagogy is innovative, experiential and praxis oriented, rich with fieldwork and research experiences, giving the learner and the social work educator equal chances to evolve as professional social workers.
We have contributed to the society immensely in terms of our field action projects, research, networking and liaisoning with state, civil society and socially responsible businesses.


Historical Time Line

And if you say to yourselves: What can 20 students do in the face of India’s problems? I would remind you that you are 20, but the beginning. Year by year, the number will increase…and the time will come when trained social workers will be at work in every important centre in India. -- Dr. Clifford Manschardt, Inaugural Speech, 1936

A new profession is born…the first institution in South Asia for professional Social Work education.

Proposed to the Sir Dorabji Tata Trust by Dr. Clifford Manschardt, an American Missionary - this is the first venture of the trust.

TISS starts its journey as the Sir Dorabji Tata Graduate School of Social Work from Nagpada Neighbourhood House, Byculla.

The first Field Action Project (FAP) is established, the Child Guidance Clinic, the first institution of its kind in India…renamed as Muskaan, it continues to reach out.
Diploma in Social Service Administration to twenty students…the first degree of its kind in South Asia.
  The Indian Journal of Social Work begins publication and is published without interruption till the present.
The name changes to Tata Institute of Social Sciences.

TISS reaches out to work in the Kurukshetra refugee camp in the aftermath of Partition.

“I want to send you a few lines to record my admiration of contribution which the Tata Institute of Social Sciences has made to the solution of the refugee problem….I shall not easily forget the hours that I was privileged to spend with your social work students at Kurukshetra, their initiatives, keenness and powers of organisation. They knew what they were doing, what wanted to be done, and how to do it.”

-- Evert Berger
(Special Representative, UN Relief and Rehabilitation Administration, on TISS Partition Relief Work, February 1948.)

Under the first five year plan, TISS develops a Department of Tribal Welfare under the guidance of Dr. Behram Mehta. Fieldwork commences in Chhindwara District, Madhya Pradesh.
  US delegation with Eleanor Roosevelt, wife of US President Franklin D. Roosevelt visits the campus.
TISS shifts to Deonar campus.
  Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru presides over the Silver Jubilee Celebrations
Deemed University Status. The Diploma in Social Service Administration becomes an M.A. in Social Work
The social work specialisation in Labour Welfare and Industrial Relations develops into an M.A. Programme in Personnel Management and Industrial Relations.
Prof. Armaity Desai takes over as Director and moves TISS towards a paradigm shift in social work education from an urban institution based remedial model to more rural-oriented community and rights-based approach
Launch of Special Cell for Women and Children, Maharashtra, a field action project

Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi inaugurates the Golden Jubilee celebrations

Launch of Integrated Rural Health and Development Project (IRHDP), a field action project


Launch of Prayas, a field action project


Launch of Resource Cell for Juvenile Justice, a field action project

Institute level Academic Structuring: New Centres came into existence under the School of Social Work.

Major changes in the social work curriculum- M. A. Social Work with thematic concentrations.

Launch of Koshish, a field action project


Launched the M.A. Social Work in Disability Studies and Action.

Launch of RCI-VAW Resource Centre for Interventions on Violence Against Women, a field action project


Launch of Towards Advocacy Networking and Developmental Action (TANDA), a field action project

Launch of Tarasha, a field action project

Establishment of three new Centre namely Centre for Equity and Justice for Children and Families; Centre for Livelihoods and Social Innovation; and Centre for Women-centred Social Work.

Launched the M.A. Social Work with nine thematic programmes

Launch of the ‘I Access’ Rights Mission, a field action project

Launch of the iCBR Project (Inclusive Community Based Rehabilitation Project), a field action project

Launch of the Criminal Justice Fellowship Programme, a field action project


Our Illustrious Alumni

  • Prof. Armaity Desai
  • Prof. P.D. Kulkarni
  • Prof. Meenakshi Apte
  • Mr. Adolf Tragler
  • Prof. Vimla Nadkarni
  • Ms. Medha Patkar
  • Ms. Anu Aga
  • Ms. Preeti Oza
  • Ms. Suneeta Dhar
  • Dr. Purnima Mane
  • Mr. Subhash Mendapurkar
  • Ms. Meena Seshu
  • Mr. Samir Ghosh
  • Ms. Sumitra Bhave
  • Ms. Srilatha Batliwala
  • Ms. Sheela Patel
  • Prof. Anjali Dave
  • Mr. Brian Lobo
  • Mr. Vishram Patil
  • Ms. Prema Gopalan
  • Mr. K.J. Joy
  • Ms. Priti Patkar
  • Ms. Jeroo Billimoria
  • Ms. Laxmi Narayan
  • Ms. Noorjehan Safia Niaz
  • Mr. Arunendra Pandey
  • Mr. Yogesh Pawar
  • Ms. Sowmya Kidambi
  • Mr. Simpreet Singh
  • Ms. Paromita Goswami
  • Mr. Savio Carvalho
  • Ms. Hekali Vikiye Zhimomi
  • Dr. Jeevan Raj Sharma
  • Ms. Donna Fernandes
  • Ms. Nalini Nayak
  • Mr. Vijayanarayanan
  • Mr. Ezra Ms. Hekali
  • Mr. Arunendra Pandey
  • Adv. Ms. Sangeeta Punekar
  • Mr. Mohd. Tarique
  • Mr. Mayank Sinha
  • Dr. Sanober Sahni

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