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Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

Joy Parkinson, Lisa Schuster, Rory Mulcahy and Heini Maarit Taiminen

This paper aims to examine the service experience in an online support community of consumers to understand the nature of social support and how it is experienced and…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the service experience in an online support community of consumers to understand the nature of social support and how it is experienced and enacted by vulnerable consumers.

Design/methodology/approach

A netnographic study was conducted to examine vulnerable consumers’ participation in an online support group for weight management. The Linguistic Inquiry Word Count (LIWC) program was used, and additionally data were coded using open coding. A hybrid approach to data analysis was undertaken using inductive and deductive methods.

Findings

The findings suggest online social support groups can be used as an online “third place” to support vulnerable consumers, with vulnerable groups engaging with the online support group differently than those in the normal weight group. Social support was also found to be bi-directional in nature.

Research limitations/implications

This study only investigates one online support group. To gain deeper insights, other support groups should be examined over a longer period.

Practical implications

This paper demonstrates that transformative services have the hidden capacity to optimize their services to enable vulnerable consumers to co-create social support in a safe place, thus providing a non-judgmental environment with the end goal of improving their health and well-being.

Social implications

Findings reveal how services can enable marginalization and stigmatization to be overcome and inspire social action through the use of online support groups.

Originality/value

This research is unique in that it used a netnography approach to examine how vulnerable consumers interact in an online service setting, reducing self-report bias and allowing for a natural research setting, thus allowing a unique understanding of how vulnerable consumers experience and enact social support.

Details

Journal of Services Marketing, vol. 31 no. 4/5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0887-6045

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 14 September 2012

Sian Evans

The purpose of this paper is to assess whether current routinely available population level data are adequate for assessing the health needs of vulnerable children.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess whether current routinely available population level data are adequate for assessing the health needs of vulnerable children.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper presents a review of routinely available population level data relating to 23 vulnerable child groups.

Findings

Data were available to measure how many children may be affected locally for seven groups (30 per cent) (looked after children, care leavers, absent or excluded pupils, children in poverty, young offenders, children in need and children assessed to be at risk of social services). Partial data were available for 11 (48 per cent) groups and no data were identified for five (22 per cent) groups. At least one measure of health and well being status was identified for three groups (13 per cent) (care leavers, children assessed to be in need of social services and children assessed to be at risk by social services). For seven groups (30 per cent), a measure of health status was identified for some children in the group. No measure of health status was identified for 13 groups (57 per cent).

Research limitations/implications

The review only considered routinely published data that can be reported for all counties or unitary authorities in England. Although every effort was taken to ensure complete identification, it is still possible that some data sources may have been missed.

Practical implications

The gaps in available data to monitor vulnerable children's health will make the task of ensuring their needs are appropriately represented in local needs assessment and health strategies more difficult. The current service reforms offer an opportunity to address the data gaps.

Originality/value

Data relating to some vulnerable child groups was reviewed in 2006 when a number of recommendations were made. This paper updates and broadens that review and reports on progress made against the 2006 recommendations. The findings of the paper have implications for policy makers and commissioners of children's services.

Details

Journal of Public Mental Health, vol. 11 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5729

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Article
Publication date: 7 September 2015

Tony Fang and Morley Gunderson

The purpose of this paper is to analyse the labour market exclusion of the groups in Canada that have been defined as vulnerable in that they were persistently in poverty…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyse the labour market exclusion of the groups in Canada that have been defined as vulnerable in that they were persistently in poverty over a defined period of time. The vulnerable groups were: unattached individuals age 45-64, disabled persons, recent immigrants, lone parents, Aboriginal persons and youth not in school.

Design/methodology/approach

Five panels of data from the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics are used over the period from 1993 to 2010 to compare the vulnerable groups with a benchmark non-vulnerable in various dimensions: a descriptive profile of their labour market exclusion and characteristics; a portrayal of their trends in labour market exclusion; an analysis of the persistence of being excluded from the labour force; and an econometric analysis of the determinants of their probability of transitioning into the labour force and out of the labour force.

Findings

The vulnerable groups tend to be disproportionately excluded from the labour force and to be persistently excluded for longer periods of time. They are generally more likely to be female, lower educated, in poorer health and to find their life to be stressful and to have recently experienced a negative life event. Exclusion from the labour market tends to trend downward over time for both the non-vulnerable benchmark group and the various vulnerable groups. There is considerable variability in the patterns across the different groups with respect to transitions into and out of the labour market.

Practical implications

The labour market is a first line of defense against social and economic exclusion. While labour market exclusion is trending downward it remains stubbornly high for the vulnerable groups. Their diversity of experiences suggest a one-size-fits all solution to exclusion is not appropriate for the different vulnerable groups. Different policy initiatives are appropriate and they are discussed for each vulnerable group.

Originality/value

The paper is the first to systematically examine a wide range of dimensions of the labour market exclusion of the vulnerable groups in Canada and to highlight their similarities and differences. It also highlights the various policy initiatives that are appropriate for the different groups.

Content available
Article
Publication date: 11 February 2021

Kezban Yagci Sokat and Nezih Altay

Epidemics and pandemics can result in sudden morbidity and mortality as well as social and economic disruption. However, the humanitarian logistics and supply chain…

Abstract

Purpose

Epidemics and pandemics can result in sudden morbidity and mortality as well as social and economic disruption. However, the humanitarian logistics and supply chain management (HLSCM) field has been mostly focusing on life saving operations after natural disasters such as earthquakes and hurricanes. There is no research within the HLSCM literature neither on the unique properties of vulnerable groups, nor their underlying risk factors or how to mitigate them. The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the uniqueness of some vulnerable groups and motivated us to conduct a structured literature review to identify research needs in HLSCM with regards to vulnerable populations.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors conduct a systematic review of literature on the intersection of epidemics/pandemics, humanitarian operations and vulnerable populations. They utilize the Scopus database to search for peer-reviewed journal articles published in English. Our search results in 366 articles which we reduced to 139 after filtering.

Findings

There is no research within the HLSCM literature on the unique properties of various vulnerable populations. The authors show that HLSCM scholars can contribute to literature by investigating operational and logistical challenges of serving vulnerable populations through multi-disciplinary research, research on the intersection of public health and supply chain management, research on the intersection of ethics and operations management, and research on cross-sectoral partnerships.

Research limitations/implications

The authors’ work is limited to peer-reviewed journal articles published in English. They did not include books, conference proceedings and think-tank or NGO reports. However, the authors do recognize that these sources can be very valuable.

Originality/value

To best of authors’ knowledge, this is the first study to review the literature on vulnerable populations under the threat of epidemics and pandemics.

Details

Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-6747

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 7 September 2015

Vassil Kirov and Pernille Hohnen

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how trade unions may address the questions of inclusion of vulnerable employees in low-wage “anchored” sectors in the European…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how trade unions may address the questions of inclusion of vulnerable employees in low-wage “anchored” sectors in the European Union.

Design/methodology/approach

The findings presented in the paper are mainly results of the analysis of stakeholder policies and strategies on the national level and on the European level, including both desk research and interviews with social partner representatives and other experts in the sectors as well as company case studies carried out in the examined countries in three selected sectors: cleaning, waste collection and catering.

Findings

The main findings of the paper refer to the indirect way in which trade unions try to promote the inclusion of vulnerable groups in the examined sectors. On this basis are formulated policy recommendations.

Research limitations/implications

The paper is based on case study research that does not cover all possible “anchored” services, vulnerable groups and types of countries, according to their employment and social models.

Practical implications

This paper formulates practical recommendations to European trade unions in the services.

Originality/value

The originality of the paper is related to comparative research focused on services sectors and the consequences of the spatial reorganisation of sectors for the trade union actions.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 36 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 10 August 2020

Sarah Dodds and Alexandra Claudia Hess

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has created a challenging, yet opportunistic, environment in which to conduct transformative service research (TSR) and assess research…

Abstract

Purpose

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has created a challenging, yet opportunistic, environment in which to conduct transformative service research (TSR) and assess research methodology. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate and gain important new insights of a group interviewing method with vulnerable people and their support group, adapted and transferred online during COVID-19.

Design/methodology/approach

This research examines the experiences of 35 participants (nine family groups composed of parents and young people), involved in a research project that explores a sensitive topic, youth alcohol consumption and family communication, that was moved online during lockdown. Researcher reflections on running group interviews face-to-face prior to COVID- 19 and online during lockdown are included in the data.

Findings

Thematic analysis of participant interviews and researcher reflections reveals four key benefits and three limitations of online group interviews with vulnerable people and their support group. The benefits include being comfortable, non-intrusive and safe; engaging and convenient; online communication ease and easy set-up. The limitations relate to lack of non-verbal communication, poor set-up, and privacy and access issues.

Practical implications

The global environment is uncertain and being able to implement effective qualitative research online is essential for TSR and service research in the future. This paper provides a step by step procedure for an innovative online group interviewing technique that can be used by TSR and qualitative service researchers.

Originality/value

Conducting research during a pandemic has provided unprecedented insights into qualitative research approaches and methodology. This paper contributes to literature on service and TSR methodology by providing a framework for researchers to investigate vulnerable groups online in an effective, safe and non-intrusive way. The framework also has the potential to be applied to other service contexts.

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 32 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 November 2006

Katie Hanson and Tom Hamilton

The safeguarding vulnerable groups bill aims to improve the system of checks on staff and volunteers who want to work in social care, health or education. However, it…

Abstract

The safeguarding vulnerable groups bill aims to improve the system of checks on staff and volunteers who want to work in social care, health or education. However, it creates different levels of protection for children and for vulnerable adults. This article sets out the concerns expressed by a small coalition of disability charities that argued for improvements to the bill during its passage through Parliament. In particular, they wished to rectify the bill's failure to provide for mandatory checks on staff working privately for vulnerable adults who lack the capacity to manage their own affairs. These arguments were opposed by carers' organisations that wanted to avoid increasing the regulatory burden on carers. We critically examine these arguments, and ask whether there is a conflict of interests between carers and vulnerable adults.

Details

The Journal of Adult Protection, vol. 8 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1466-8203

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 8 May 2017

Timo Dietrich, Jakob Trischler, Lisa Schuster and Sharyn Rundle-Thiele

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how vulnerable consumers can be involved in transformative service design and how this approach may enhance the design of such…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how vulnerable consumers can be involved in transformative service design and how this approach may enhance the design of such services. The study also analyzes how co-design with vulnerable consumers differs from existing user involvement processes with the purpose of developing a co-design framework.

Design/methodology/approach

A case study approach was employed, with six high schools in Australia identified as sites to conduct co-design sessions for a school-based alcohol education program. Adolescents were invited to review and (re)design an existing alcohol education program.

Findings

The study indicates that co-design with vulnerable consumers cannot be approached in the same way as conventional user involvement processes. Based on the insights generated from six co-design sessions as well as the examination of user involvement and co-design literature, the authors propose a six-step co-design framework. The six steps comprise resourcing, planning, recruiting, sensitizing, facilitation and evaluation.

Research limitations/implications

The co-design framework illustrates important differences to conventional user involvement processes. However, the generalizability of the research findings is limited to a specific study setting and a narrowly defined sample. Future research in a different setting is needed to further validate the presented findings.

Practical implications

For service design practice, this study provides guidelines on how co-design activities with vulnerable consumers can be effectively resourced, planned, recruited, sensitized, facilitated and evaluated. The framework outlines how co-design may be applied so that vulnerable consumers can become empowered participants during the design process.

Originality/value

This research contributes to the knowledge in transformative service research – a priority in service research – and service design by extending the boundaries of our understanding of processes and tools for the involvement of vulnerable consumers in transformative service design.

Details

Journal of Service Theory and Practice, vol. 27 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2055-6225

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 23 October 2018

Pei Liang, Junhua Hu, Yongmei Liu and Xiaohong Chen

This paper aims to solve the problem of public resource allocation among vulnerable groups by proposing a new method called uncertain α-coordination value based on…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to solve the problem of public resource allocation among vulnerable groups by proposing a new method called uncertain α-coordination value based on uncertain cooperative game.

Design/methodology/approach

First, explicit forms of uncertain Shapley value with Chouqet integral form and uncertain centre-of-gravity of imputation-set (CIS) value are defined separately on the basis of uncertainty theory and cooperative game. Then, a convex combination of the two values above called the uncertain α-coordination value is used as the best solution. This study proves that the proposed methods meet the basic properties of cooperative game.

Findings

The uncertain α-coordination value is used to solve a public medical resource allocation problem in fuzzy coalitions and uncertain payoffs. Compared with other methods, the α-coordination value can solve such problem effectively because it balances the worries of vulnerable group’s further development and group fairness.

Originality/value

In this paper, an extension of classical cooperative game called uncertain cooperative game is proposed, in which players choose any level of participation in a game and relate uncertainty with the value of the game. A new function called uncertain α-Coordination value is proposed to allocate public resources amongst vulnerable groups in an uncertain environment, a topic that has not been explored yet. The definitions of uncertain Shapley value with Choquet integral form and uncertain CIS value are proposed separately to establish uncertain α-Coordination value.

Details

Kybernetes, vol. 48 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0368-492X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 7 September 2015

John Burgess and Julia Connell

The purpose of this paper is to introduce this special issue volume on vulnerable work and strategies for inclusion. Definitions, measurement, analysis and policy…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to introduce this special issue volume on vulnerable work and strategies for inclusion. Definitions, measurement, analysis and policy responses to vulnerable work and strategies for inclusion are addressed before the key aspects of the nine papers included in the special issue are summarised.

Design/methodology/approach

The topic of vulnerability at work is explored, before the distinguishing features of jobs that generate vulnerable conditions and the characteristics of vulnerable workers are identified.

Findings

Vulnerable work is insecure and irregular with few protections accorded to the vulnerable workers who are often characterised by their age, ethnic status, gender and skill profiles. The consequences include: poor job quality, low and irregular incomes and personal/family hardship. Vulnerability is widespread across the workforce, with workers subject to work intensification, employment insecurity and poor work-life balance.

Social implications

Vulnerable work and workers constitute a growing and global phenomenon. Consequently, governments and employers need to work together on programmes, such as the ILO’s decent work agenda, to ensure that basic human rights at work are widely recognised and provision to ongoing employment, safe working conditions and regular hours are offered across a variety of industries/sectors.

Originality/value

This volume examines the conceptual, empirical and policy aspects of vulnerability in employment. It documents the international dimensions of vulnerability, the different forms it takes, those groups that are at risk of vulnerable employment and the underlying factors that generate and support vulnerability.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 36 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

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