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The purpose of this paper is to explore how feeling rules are constructed, experienced and contested within personalised social work practice. It considers how…
The purpose of this paper is to explore how feeling rules are constructed, experienced and contested within personalised social work practice. It considers how organisations seek to shape practitioners towards certain forms of emotional display in increasingly market-oriented conditions. It contributes to our understanding of the place of “backstage” emotional labour in seeking to shape and direct social work practice.
A single immersive ethnographic case study of an English social work department was undertaken over a period of six months.
This paper reveals embedded tensions that emerge when practitioners are caught between traditional bureaucratic function, the incursions of the market and feeling rules of relatability, commitment and creativity.
This paper contributes to the scant literature on frontline experiences of personalisation in children’s services and the importance of “backstage” emotional labour for shaping and directing social work practice. Importantly, it considers the complexity of emotional labour within an organisational context, which is neither fully marketised, nor fully welfarised, a position many welfare organisations now find themselves in.
The purpose of this paper is to explore the changing meaning of personalisation from the New Labour era of bespoke, integrated family support to the more recent…
The purpose of this paper is to explore the changing meaning of personalisation from the New Labour era of bespoke, integrated family support to the more recent implementation of personal budgets for disabled children to deliver “choice and control”. The paper explores the discursive change from early help to “intervention”, the shifting conceptualisation of parents and the turn away from family support towards a focus upon individualised commissioning to meet needs.
In addition to a literature review of policy shifts, findings presented are taken from an ethnographic case study of one team of children’s disability social workers. Observations were undertaken of the team in the office space and at meetings, in addition interviews were conducted with all team members and with seven families. An interpretivist and qualitative approach was adopted throughout.
Findings reveal the frontline and familial challenges of delivering choice and control in a climate of austerity and child-centricism. Salient points for integration around families and between organisations as personalisation narrows in scope are also considered.
Findings are taken from one case study site; further research in different sites is required to consider the array of understandings and experiences across the social care landscape and to provide a strong empirical baseline.
The paper reports on one of the first ethnographic studies of personalisation in children’s services. The paper is of value to practitioners and managers in social care and the NHS. It is also of value to academics exploring the conceptual and practical issues of individualised care.