Authors give attention to the theory and practice of social action and self-directed groupwork. These papers present a range of perspectives and experiences to provide a vivid account of social action as a values-based approach committed to social justice and empowerment. In addition, they contain a wealth of ideas and practices, a detailed resource which we hope will inspire and signpost, without shirking the dilemmas and challenges to be considered, understood, faced and addressed. The collection demonstrates the enduring value of social and self-directed groupwork. The approaches have probably never been more relevant than in today's social conditions. Chapters were originally published between 1988 and 2013 in two journals: Groupwork, and Social Action.