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New public management and practitioner autonomy in Children's Services in Norway and Wales: views from the frontline

Djupvik, Alf Roger, Myklebust, Vidar Kjetil, Ekeland, Tor-Johan, Pithouse, Andy, Brookfield, Charlotte and Rees, Alyson 2019. New public management and practitioner autonomy in Children's Services in Norway and Wales: views from the frontline. European Journal of Social Work , 10.1080/13691457.2019.1693338.
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Abstract

The article examines aspects of professional autonomy informed by cross sectional surveys of social workers in Wales (UK) and Norway. The data show that in Wales there is circumscribed autonomy whereby rule compliance is both expected and scrutinised, and practitioners are more likely to spend time as a ‘screen-worker’, fettered by austerity, risk-focused and safety-oriented towards children. The Norwegian sample appears to enjoy front-line freedoms to utilise discretion in delivering bespoke preventive services and are much more likely to spend time at ‘street-level’ working in a child welfare and family-focused approach. Despite these profound differences between the two samples, both sets of practitioners consider their administrative duties to be an important feature of practice rather than an unwarranted diversion from direct work; participants in both countries consider their work to be of quality and most look forward to going to work. These and other variations and similarities in the data are discussed in light of relevant system features and policy.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: In Press
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISSN: 1369-1457
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 18 November 2019
Date of Acceptance: 12 November 2019
Last Modified: 21 Jan 2021 21:37
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/126856

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