Professor Gordana Berc was born on 11 September 1970 in Zagreb, where she completed primary and secondary school. She started studying social work at the Department of Social Work of the Faculty of Law, University of Zagreb in 1995, where she graduated in 1999.

In 2005, she defended her master’s thesis under the title “Comparison of the Leisure Culture of Parents and their Children” at the Department of Pedagogy of the Faculty of Philosophy, University of Zagreb. In 2009,  she defended her doctoral dissertation under the title “Family Cohesiveness in the Context of the Conflict between the Work and Family Roles of Parents” at the Social Work Study Centre.

From 2001 to present, Gordana Berc has been employed at the Faculty of Law, University of Zagreb at the Social Work Study Centre, Department of Social Work, Chair for the fields of social work, where she teaches undergraduate and graduate courses (Counselling Basics, Social Work in Education, Social Work Focused on the Improvement of Partner and Family Relations, Different Approaches to Counselling) and two elective courses within postgraduate programmes.

Gordana Berc was a mentor for numerous final and graduate theses of social work students, as well as for two specialist theses and one doctoral thesis.

Regarding the scientific and research work, she has participated in several scientific national and international projects, among which are “Social Policy and Social Work in Croatia”, “Models of Action and Evaluation Research”, “Functioning and Empowerment of Families at Risk in the Republic of Croatia”. Berc Gordana was the manager of the project “Support to Young People in Education: Analysis of Social Risks that Contribute to Leaving Secondary Schools in the City of Zagreb”. She was a member of several project teams at the national and international level. She was the coordinator of two international projects, one of which was supported by IASSW (Human Rights-based Social Work Practice in Southeastern Europe), and the other by EASSW (Re-examining Social Work Education with Migrants and Refugees in the Balkans: Generalist vs Specialized Social Work Curriculum?).

For the last few years, she has been participating in projects related to the youth at risk and participating as a researcher in the Erasmus+ project: Inclusive and Transformative Frameworks for All: YouthReach.

From 2001 to 2022, Gordana Berc has published about 40 scientific papers and presented over 50 papers at international conferences and at domestic conferences and seminars.

In 2008, Gordana Berc participated in the six-month Junior Faculty Development Program as a junior assistant at the University of St. Thomas and the University of St. Catherine, St. Paul, Minnesota (USA). Based on this experience, she proposed two courses (Social Work in Education and Special Approaches to Counselling) that have been held since 2009. In 2012, she received the Katherine A. Kendall scholarship at the University of St. Thomas School of social work, USA. In 2018, she was on a study-leave at the Faculty of Social Work, University of Ljubljana.

Gordana Berc is a member of the board of directors of the Consortium for Social Development (ICSD), the president of the ICSD European branch and a member and founder of the Southeast European Academic Women’s Leadership Initiative (SEAWLI). She is the winner of the ICSD award for contribution in the field of social development and leadership for 2019.

She is a member of the editorial board of the following journals: British Journal of Social work, Revia za Socialno delo, Social Studies, Social Development Issues.

Gordana Berc has completed trainings in the field of counselling and psychotherapy. She worked as a therapist in the club of treated alcoholics and as a counsellor in the family counselling centre of the Caritas of the Zagreb Archdiocese.

Since 2021 she has been holding the position of the head of the Department of Social Work.