The impetus for this edited collection has been an evolving process for us for several years. As experienced social workers in Northern Ireland who then went on to pursue academic pathways, we had become increasingly convinced that the time was right to look in an in-depth way at how social workers in Northern Ireland had coped over the thirty-year period of ‘the Troubles’. We knew from previous research we had been involved in that mental health social workers had experienced considerable challenges as social workers when continuous violence characterised the societal backdrop to their work (Campbell and McCrystal, 2005) and that this was also a similar feature in other international contexts affected by political conflict (Campbell and Duffy, 2008; Campbell et al., 2016, 2018; Duffy, 2012; Duffy et al., 2013). As is so often the case in the early stages of such important projects, having informal conversations with our eventual funders, the British Association of Social Workers Northern Ireland (BASW(NI)) and the Northern Ireland Social Care Council (NISCC) proved pivotal. Like ourselves, both BASW(NI) and NISCC also felt passionately that the time was now appropriate, approaching the twentieth anniversary of the Northern Ireland Peace Agreement, for this research to be developed as we collectively felt that there was an important story to be told. We, therefore, further refined our thinking and agreed the basis for a research project which we agreed needed to focus on the professional lived experiences of social workers as they struggled to meet the needs of their clients in a very unstable societal milieu. Voices of Social Work through the Conflict in Northern Ireland would, therefore, explore how social workers were affected by the political conflict in Northern Ireland during the period 1969–1998. This focus would include the impact upon social workers’ professional and family lives, the responses by their employers, the types of interventions used and the role of social work education in preparing them for practice.