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Dr Stéphanie Wahab

MSW, PhD (Social Welfare) Washington

Honorary Research Associate Professor

Contact details


Research interests

My research interests weave through significant and often complicated feminist and social work terrain engaging issues of violence, sex work, and behavioral health.

I’ve committed to complicating and deepening understandings of diversity and social justice through interdisciplinary and intersectional approaches to research and practice assuming that identities and systems of oppression are nuanced and interconnected.

My work has taken up issues of difference at the intersections of race, ethnicity, class, gender, nationality, and sexual orientation. I situate much of my scholarship as feminist because of its engagement with feminist principles, tenants and theories, and because of the methodological attention to power, social justice, ethics, voice, and authority in the research I engage.

Specific research interests fall within three broad and frequently intersecting streams; (1) violence (at the intersection of micro and macro forces); (2) sex work; (3) feminist social work research.



Wahab, S., Anderson-Nathe, B., Gringeri, C. (Eds.). (2014). Feminisms in Social Work Research: Possibilities for justice based knowledge. New York: Routledge.

Book Chapters

Egizio, L.L., Smith, D.C., Wahab, S., & Bennett, K., (In press). Motivational Interviewing’s Theory of Practice for Social Work: Promises and pitfalls. In, M. Payne & E. Reith Hall (Eds). Handbook for Social Work Theory. New York: Routledge.

Panichelli, M., Wahab, S., Capous-Desyllas, M., Saunders, P. (2015). Queering whiteness, Unpacking privilege within U.S. based queer sex worker activism. In, M. Laing, K. Pilcher & N. Smith (Eds.), Queer Sex Work, p. 234-244. New York: Routledge.

Wahab, S., Anderson-Nathe, B., & Gringeri, C. (2012). Joining The Conversation: Social work contributions to feminist research. In, Sharlene Hesse-Biber (Ed.) Handbook of Feminist Research, p 455-474. Los Angeles, CA: SAGE.

Icard, L., Jones, T. &Wahab, S. (1999). Empowering lesbian and bisexual women of color: Overcoming three forms of oppression. In L. Gutierrez & E. Lewis (Eds.), Empowering women of color (pp. 208-225). New York: Columbia University Press.


Abel, G., & Wahab, S. (2017). “Build a friendship with them”: The discourse of “at-risk” as a barrier to relationship building between young people who trade sex and social workers.
Child and Family Social Work, 22(4), 1391-1398. DOI: 10.1111/cfs.12357

Smith, D., Hohman, M., Manthey, T., & Wahab, S. (2017). Student-perceived quality of Motivational Interviewing training: A factor analytic study. Journal of Society for Social Work Research, 8(1), p. 1-18. DOI: 10.1086/690636

Beck, E., Charania, M., Ferdoos, A.,Wahab, S. (2017). Undoing Bias and Islamophobia: Awareness of Orientalism in Social Work. Journal of Progressive Human Services, 28(2), p. 58-72. DOI: 10.1080/10428232.2017.1310542.

Wahab, S. & Abel, G. (2016). The Prostitution Reform Act (2003) and social work in Aotearoa/New Zealand” for review in Affilia: Women in Social Work, 31(4), 418-433. Doi:10.1177/0886109916647764

Wahab, S., Trimble, J., Mejia, A., Mitchell, S. R., Thomas, M. J., Waters, S., Williams, V., Raymaker, D., & Nicolaidis, C. (2014). Motivational Interviewing at the intersections of depression and intimate partner violence among African American women. Journal of Evidenced Based Social Work, 11(3), 291-303.

Anderson-Nathe, B., Gringeri, C., & Wahab, S. (2013). Nurturing "critical hope" in teaching feminist social work research. Journal of Social Work Education, 49(2), 277-291.

Nicolaidis, C., Wahab, S., Trimble, J., Mejia, A., Mitchell, S. R., Raymaker, D., Thomas, M. J., Williams, V., Waters, S. (2012). The Interconnections Project: development and evaluation of a community-based depression program for African-American violence survivors. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 28(4), 530-538.

Lerum, K., McCurtis, K., Saunders, P., & Wahab, S. (2012). Using Human Rights to hold the US Accountable for its Anti-Sex-Trafficking Agenda: The Universal Periodic Review & New Directions for US Policy. Anti-trafficking Review, 1(1), 80-103.

Manthey, T., Knowles, B., Asher, D., Wahab, S. (2011). Strength Based Practice and Motivational Interviewing. Advances in Social Work, 2(2), 126-151.

Menon, U., Belue, R., Wahab, S., Kinney, A. Y., Maramaldi, P., Wujick, D., & Szalacha. L. A. (2011). Randomized trial comparing the effect of two phone-based interventions on colorectal cancer screening adherence. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 42(3), 294-303.

Olson, L. M., Wahab, S., Thompson, C. W., & Durrant, L. (2011). Suicide Notes Among Native Americans, Hispanics, and Anglos. Qualitative Health Research, 21(11), 1484-1494.

Wahab, S. Baker, L. M., Smith, J. M., Cooper, K., Lerum, K. (2011). Exotic dance research: A review of the literature from 1970 to 2008. Journal of Sexuality and Culture, 15(1), 56-79.

Nicolaidis, C., Timmons, V., Thomas, M. J., Reynolds, S., Wahab, S., Mejia, A., Mitchell, S. R. (2010). “You don’t go tellin white people nothin”: African American women discuss the influence of violence and race on depression and depression care. American Journal of Public Health, 100(8), 1470-1476.

Gringeri, C., Wahab, S., Anderson-Nathe, B. (2010). What makes it feminist? Mapping the landscape of social work feminist research. Affilia, 25(4), 390-405.

Wahab, S. & Motivational Interviewing Intimate Partner Workgroup (2010). Guiding as practice: Motivational interviewing and trauma informed-work with survivors of intimate partner violence. Partner Abuse, 1(1), 92-104.

Wahab, S., Menon. U., & Szalacha, L. (2008). Motivational interviewing and colorectal cancer screening: A peak from the inside out. Patient Education and Counseling, 72(2), 210-217.

Wahab, S., Nakae-Gibson, S. T. (2007). Hybrid chronicles: Biracial and biethnic perspectives on the pedagogy of unlearning racism. The Qualitative Report, 12 (3), 414-429.

Ellington, L., Wahab, S., Sahami, S., Field, R., & Mooney, K. (2006). Factors that influence Spanish and English-Speaking participants' decision to enroll in cancer randomized clinical trials. Psycho-Oncology, 15, 273-284.

Wahab, S. (2006). Evaluating the usefulness of a prostitution diversion project. Qualitative Social Work, 5(1), 67-92.

Olson, L. & Wahab, S. (2006). American Indians and suicide: A neglected area of research. Trauma, Violence & Abuse, 7(1), 19-33.

Wahab, S. (2006). Motivational interviewing: A client centered and directive counseling style for work with victims of domestic violence. Arete, 29(2), 11-22.

Wahab, S. (2005). Navigating mixed theory projects: Lessons from a qualitative evaluation of Salt Lake City’s Prostitution Diversion Project. Affilia, 20(2), 203-221.

Wahab, S. (2005). Motivational Interviewing and social work practice. Journal of Social Work, 5(1), 45-60.

Wahab, S., Olson, L. (2004). Intimate partner violence and sexual assault in Native American communities. Trauma, Violence & Abuse, 5(4), 353-366.

Sloan, L., Wahab, S. (2004). Four categories of women who work as topless dancers. Journal of Sexuality and Culture, 8(1), 18-43.

Wahab, S. (2004). Tricks of the trade: What social workers can learn about female sex workers though dialogue. Qualitative Social Work, 3(2), 139-160.

Ellington, L., Wahab, S., Sahami, S., Field, R., & Mooney, K. (2003). Decision making needs for randomized clinical trial participation among Hispanics. Cancer Control Journal Cancer, Culture and Literacy Supplement, 10(5), 84-86.

Wahab, S. (2003). Creating knowledge collaboratively with female sex workers: Insights from a qualitative, feminist and participatory study. Qualitative Inquiry, 9(4), 625-642.

Wahab, S. (2002). For their own good? Sex work, social control and social workers, a historical perspective. Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare, 29(4), p. 39-57.

Ludman, E. J., VonKorff, M., Katon, W., Lin, E., Simon, G., Walker, E., Unutzer, J., Bush, T., &Wahab, S. (2000). The Design, Implementation and Acceptance of a Primary Care-Based Intervention to Prevent Depression Relapse. International Journal of Psychiatry In Medicine, 30(3), 229-245.

Sloan, L., & Wahab, S. (2000). Feminist voices on sex work: Implications for social work. Affilia, 15(4), 457-479.


Park, Y., Bhyuan, R., Wahab, S. (2019). Reclaiming the space of contestation. Affilia: Women and social work, 34(1), DOI: 10.1177/0886109918822652

Park, Y., Bhyuan, R., Wahab, S. (2017). Can an academic journal promote radical scholarship?
Affilia: Women and social work, 32(3), p. 273-275. DOI: 10.1177/0886109917716230

Park, Y., Wahab, S., Bhyuan, R. (2017). Feminisns in dangerous times. Affilia: Women and social work, 32(1), p. 5-9. DOI: 10.1177/0886109916686271

Mehrotra, G. R., Kimball, E, & Wahab, S. (2016). The braid that binds us: The impact of neoliberalism, criminalization, and professionalization on domestic violence work. Editorial. Affilia: Women and social work, 31(2), 153-163. Doi:10.1177/0886109916643871

Wahab, S., & Busch-Armendariz, N. (2014). Smarter US Prostitution laws would help AIDS fight. Huffington Post (December 1, 2014).

Wahab, S. & Panichelli, M. (2013). Ethical and Human Rights Issues in Coercive Interventions with Sex Workers. Editorial: Affilia: Women and Social Work, 28(4), 344-349.

Non-Refereed Publications

Book Chapters

Hohman, M., Wahab, S., & Slack, K. (2011). Supporting Self-Efficacy or What If They Think They Can’t Do It? In Melindah Hohman (Ed.). Motivational Interviewing and Social Work. Guilford Press.


Beck, E., & Wahab, S. (2015). Orientalism in social work. Encyclopedia entry for the Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioural Sciences. Elsivier, LTD.

Anderson-Nathe, B., DeFilippis, Hawash, L., Mehrotra, G., & Wahab, S. (2014). An open letter to PSU on armed campus police officers. Street Roots (December 5), p. 12.

Wahab, S. (2012). Violence against sex workers. In Judy Postmus (Ed.), Sexual Violence and Abuse: An Encyclopedia of Prevention, Impacts, and Recovery. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO.

Wahab, S. (2006). Prostitution diversion programs. In Encyclopedia of Prostitution and Sex Work, 1, 137-140. Greenwood Publishing Group.

Wahab, S. (2005). Introduction to the special edition on sex work. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 20(3), 263-269.

Wahab, S. (2005). Editor for a special edition of Journal of Interpersonal Violence on sex work. Violence In the Lives of Sex Workers 20(3), 263-269.

Wahab, S. (2004). Ethical dilemmas in research sex work. Research For Sex Work, 7, 3-5.

Wahab, S. (2004). Privilege and resistance within the domestic violence movement. Motivational Interviewing Newsletter: Updates, Education & Training, 11(2).

Wahab, S. (2004). Anti-oppression values find a place at the MI roundtable. Motivational Interviewing Newsletter: Updates, Education & Training, 11(3), 40-41.