The 54th ANZAAS (Australian and New Zealand Association for the Advancement of Science) Congress was held at the Australian National University in Canberra in May 1984. Seven papers were presented by staff of the Social Welfare Research Centre. Most were presented in the Social Welfare section, established at the 1983 Congress; others were in associated areas such as sociology and women's studies. In reading this publication it is also necessary to bear in mind that some papers are reporting on findings and conclusions of research recently completed by the staff at the Centre, while others are drawing tentative conclusions from exploratory work in progress. The intention in publishing these is to stimulate ideas and discussion.