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Conflict and convergence: managing pluralism in planning and provision

Tamara Essex (Middlesex University, UK)

International Journal of Public Sector Management

ISSN: 0951-3558

Article publication date: 1 December 1998



There has been much research focusing on contracting and its effect on individual voluntary sector organisation, and some mapping of the extent of voluntary sector participation in joint community care planning. Each of these is a new and formal relationship with the statutory sector, and in many cases the tasks are fulfilled by the same voluntary sector worker (usually the senior paid officer of the agency). But the impact that these two new relationships have on the voluntary organisation’s perception of its dependence and inter‐dependence has received less attention. The paper will draw on structured interviews in three local authorities, with voluntary sector participants in contracts for social care, and with participants in joint community care planning groups, as well as on documentary research. It will explore the impact of the evolving roles for those seeking to operate effectively in the pluralist provision of public services. It will analyse experiences within joint community care planning structures, and will analyse experiences of contractual relationships. The paper will seek to identify the elements present in each research site which influence the culture of joint working within the two statutory/ voluntary relationships.



Essex, T. (1998), "Conflict and convergence: managing pluralism in planning and provision", International Journal of Public Sector Management, Vol. 11 No. 7, pp. 622-649.




Copyright © 1998, MCB UP Limited

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