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Article
Publication date: 11 September 2007

Vando Borghi and Rik van Berkel

This article aims to discuss the individualisation trend in the provision of social services, focusing on activation services specifically.

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Abstract

Purpose

This article aims to discuss the individualisation trend in the provision of social services, focusing on activation services specifically.

Design/methodology/approach

The individualisation trend in the provision of activation services is analysed against the background of public sector as well as social sector as well as social policy reforms: the introduction of new modes of governance and the rise of the active welfare state respectively.

Findings

Concrete manifestations of individualised service provision are often based on various interpretations of individualisation and reflect different meanings of citizens’ participation, and refer to different modes – or rather, mixes of different modes – of governance. The general argument of the article is illustrated and elaborated by analysing three national case studies of individualised service provision in the context of activation: the UK, The Netherlands and Finland.

Originality/value

The trend that is analysed in the article – individualised service provision – is very clearly present in welfare state reforms, but has thus far not received much attention in academic literature.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 27 no. 9/10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

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Article
Publication date: 11 May 2009

Michael Kendrick

The International Initiative for Mental Health Leadership (IIMHL) is a joint endeavour involving eight countries, and aims to facilitate the sharing of best practices and…

Abstract

The International Initiative for Mental Health Leadership (IIMHL) is a joint endeavour involving eight countries, and aims to facilitate the sharing of best practices and to provide support and collaboration for leaders of mental health services to develop robust and effective managerial and operational practices. The ultimate aim is to improve services for people who use them. An article from the IIMHL is included in every issue of The International Journal of Leadership in Public Services.This paper describes the key learning outcomes that came from the examination of the experience of eight American community‐based agencies that altered their service practices from an exclusive reliance on group and fixed models of service, to models of service that were exclusively individualised for the entirety of the people they served. It examines the key lessons learned as to what drove this process and what did not, as well as what some of the critical comparative outcomes were. A significant core factor cited repeatedly was values‐based leadership from within the agency concerned and a key result was that individualised services for every person served were very cost competitive in the systems they were in.

Details

International Journal of Leadership in Public Services, vol. 5 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-9886

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Article
Publication date: 19 September 2008

Ian P. Dewing and Peter O. Russell

Under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000, the Financial Services Authority (FSA) is the single regulator of firms in the UK financial services industry. The Act…

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2830

Abstract

Purpose

Under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000, the Financial Services Authority (FSA) is the single regulator of firms in the UK financial services industry. The Act grants extensive powers to the FSA such that it can impose by rules and regulations additional corporate governance requirements on firms in the financial services industry. The legislative and regulatory requirements also extend to individuals under the FSA approved persons' regime. The purpose of the paper is to examine this individualization of corporate governance.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper first explores the rise to significance of internal control and risk management in corporate governance and regulation, and links this to Beck's risk society and individualization theses. The extent of the individualization of corporate governance by the approved persons' regime is explored by examining three sources of evidence: the FSA's documents setting out the approved persons' regime; the initial perceptions about the implementation of the approved persons' regime from interviews with high‐level individuals in the financial services industry; and the outcomes of illustrative FSA enforcement actions against individuals.

Findings

The findings are that the FSA has developed a comprehensive and formidable apparatus for the individualization of corporate governance in the UK's financial services industry. It is argued that a discourse based on the interpretive evaluations of internal control and risk management may be replacing a discourse based on the quantitative techniques of management accounting, which may be characterised as the demise of the “calculating self” and the rise of the “auditable self”.

Practical implications

The FSA's approved persons' regime could be developed as a model for other areas of the private and public sectors, where for regulatory purposes it may be desirable to identify approved or official roles.

Originality/value

The ability of regulators to “make” corporate governance by rules and regulations is relatively unexplored. Also, the focus of corporate governance is on firms rather than individuals. The paper considers the extension of corporate governance from the firm to the individual that may be achieved by regulation.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 21 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 4 December 2017

Benjamin Fuchs

Poverty transitions can be explained by two opposing theories: the traditional sociological approach that focusses on social stratification and individualisation theory…

Abstract

Purpose

Poverty transitions can be explained by two opposing theories: the traditional sociological approach that focusses on social stratification and individualisation theory, which emphasises on life course risks for all strata. Both perspectives have been investigated extensively for income poverty while neglecting other important poverty indicators, such as deprivation or the receipt of social assistance. The purpose of this paper is to focus on the latter to investigate the impact of social stratification (e.g. social class), life course risks (e.g. health problems), and their interactions on the probability of social assistance entry for Germany.

Design/methodology/approach

The analysis utilises survey data containing a sample of first-time social assistance entrants and a sample of the residential population. Applying case-control methodology, logistic regression is conducted to model the impact of social stratification determinants, life course risks, and their interactions on the probability of social assistance entry.

Findings

Social stratification determinants, particularly social class, have a significant effect. However, their effect is weaker than the effect of life course risks. Contrary to the prediction of individualisation theory, the poverty-triggering impact of life course risks varies substantially by social stratum. The combination of both theories yields high predictive power.

Originality/value

This paper is the first to comprehensively test social stratification and individualisation theory with respect to social assistance receipt as a poverty indicator. It is the first paper that investigates the entire population at risk of social assistance entry in Germany.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 37 no. 13/14
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

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Book part
Publication date: 18 July 2017

Kala Saravanamuthu

Accounting’s definition of accountability should include attributes of socioenvironmental degradation manufactured by unsustainable technologies. Beck argues that emergent…

Abstract

Accounting’s definition of accountability should include attributes of socioenvironmental degradation manufactured by unsustainable technologies. Beck argues that emergent accounts should reflect the following primary characteristics of technological degradation: complexity, uncertainty, and diffused responsibility. Financial stewardship accounts and probabilistic assessments of risk, which are traditionally employed to allay the public’s fear of uncontrollable technological hazards, cannot reflect these characteristics because they are constructed to perpetuate the status quo by fabricating certainty and security. The process through which safety thresholds are constructed and contested represents the ultimate form of socialized accountability because these thresholds shape how much risk people consent to be exposed to. Beck’s socialized total accountability is suggested as a way forward: It has two dimensions, extended spatiotemporal responsibility and the psychology of decision-making. These dimensions are teased out from the following constructs of Beck’s Risk Society thesis: manufactured risks and hazards, organized irresponsibility, politics of risk, radical individualization and social learning. These dimensions are then used to critically evaluate the capacity of full cost accounting (FCA), and two emergent socialized risk accounts, to integrate the multiple attributes of sustainability. This critique should inform the journey of constructing more representative accounts of technological degradation.

Details

Parables, Myths and Risks
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-534-4

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Article
Publication date: 11 September 2007

Vando Borghi and Rik van Berkel

The first part of the paper aimed to interpret the changes addressed by the concepts of governance and activation in their context, in order to grasp the larger picture of…

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882

Abstract

Purpose

The first part of the paper aimed to interpret the changes addressed by the concepts of governance and activation in their context, in order to grasp the larger picture of the societal transformation underlying them: the starting point is the assumption that new modes of governance in activation policies are a fruitful entry point for effectively understanding deep waves of change of contemporary society. The second part aims to briefly introduce the papers included in this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper insists on a perspective according to which there are two main dimension characterising the context of addressed transformations: the paradoxical torsion of the historical process of individualisation in the new spirit of capitalism; the profound redesign of the institutional programme, implying a new horizon for the instances of publicness.

Findings

Different and contradictory trends are pointed out in the actual pursuing of objectives of governance and activation, as far as the process of individualisation and the redesign of publicness are concerned. The impossibility of finding an abstract and universal evaluation of these transformations and the necessity of situated empirical inquiries are stressed.

Originality/value

The paper demonstrates the relevance of deepening the normative underlying dimensions (with regard to individualisation and publicness) of social processes for a better understanding of concrete transformations (specifically: operational and substantive changes introduced by new modes of governance in activation policies).

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 27 no. 9/10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

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Book part
Publication date: 11 September 2015

Thomas Kron, Andreas Braun and Eva-Maria Heinke

This chapter looks at a new form of a hybrid perpetrator within the field of individualized political violence. We reveal, that the new thing about (transnational…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter looks at a new form of a hybrid perpetrator within the field of individualized political violence. We reveal, that the new thing about (transnational) terrorism overcomes current oppositions and contradictions regarding terrorists and persons running amok, which (strategically) leads to an individualization of terrorism and thereby to a hybridization of a terroristic warfare.

Methodology/approach

By outlining organizational and structural changes in terroristic strategy within the framework of using both modern and antimodern elements, economic thinking, acting global as well as local, and by using network structures, the individualization of terror to the point of hybrid perpetrators is presented.

Findings

The new thing about (transnational) terrorism is the evolution of individualized perpetrators, radicalizing themselves without a clear connection to terroristic organizations. This leads to a hybridization of terroristic warfare, and within individualized single perpetrators it can be described as terrok. A terrorist running amok or a gunman on rampage with a radicalized mindset, equipped with his very individual ideology, who carries out his attacks logistically and operatively on his own while accepting his own death constitutes a new strategic way of irritating western society.

Originality/value

Currently, terrorists and persons running amok are separated into sharply distinguished categories. But regarding new tendencies in terroristic attacks committed by single perpetrators, this separation seems to be no longer able to capture the individualization of terrorism and thereby the linked hybridization of a terroristic warfare adequately. But in combining findings from both approaches, the new concept of terrok is able to do so.

Details

Terrorism and Counterterrorism Today
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-191-0

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Book part
Publication date: 1 January 2012

Silvia Gherardi and Annalisa Murgia

The article conceptualizes the dilemma between exploration and exploitation for flexible knowledge workers. At a time when work is fragmented and society is…

Abstract

The article conceptualizes the dilemma between exploration and exploitation for flexible knowledge workers. At a time when work is fragmented and society is individualized, we consider, besides the strategies of organizations, also those of workers and the ways in which they move among organizations in an attempt to ‘get by’ between increased margins of autonomy and a lack of the resources necessary to pursue their passions and to fulfil their projects. Through analysis of the life stories of flexible knowledge workers and their relationships with the organizations for which they work, the article illustrates how flexible knowledge workers handle the tension between exploration and exploitation and how organizations resist their attempts. The purpose is to interpret the pervasiveness of individualization processes that prompt individuals to think of themselves as organizations, while human resource management claim that people are their most valuable resource but treat them as disposable workers.

Details

Managing ‘Human Resources’ by Exploiting and Exploring People’s Potentials
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-506-7

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Article
Publication date: 19 November 2018

Nikolaos Karfakis and George Kokkinidis

The purpose of this paper is to provide a theoretical conceptualisation of guilt and the depoliticization of downsizing practices. The authors begin with a critical review…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a theoretical conceptualisation of guilt and the depoliticization of downsizing practices. The authors begin with a critical review of the relevant management literature aiming to establish the discursive normalization and individualization of (un)employment. The authors then use secondary sources to reflect on the downsizing process. A process that, as the authors argue, is distinguished into three separate but interconnected phases: corporate memos (phase 1), termination scripts (phase 2) and the role of outplacement services (phase 3). By examining this process, the aim is to point to the mechanisms through which downsizing practices are neutralized and depoliticized.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a conceptual work that provides a systematic overview of the existing management literature on downsizing and guilt. Use of other secondary sources (corporate memos and termination scripts) is also employed to draw links between the discursive normalization of downsizing as identified in the relevant literature and the specific organizational processes and practices implemented by corporations during downsizing. The authors identify common ideas and themes that cut across the relevant literature and the secondary sources and aim to offer a theoretical conceptualisation of guilt and the depoliticization of downsizing practices.

Findings

This paper argues that downsizing discourses and practices contribute to the feelings of personal responsibility and self-blame, reinforcing an individualistic understanding of work and unemployment that excludes more structural ones, and that it helps in reproducing the existing structures of power.

Research limitations/implications

The study recognizes that employees’ reactions are not only unpredictable but also constantly evolving, depending on personal and social circumstances. The authors also recognize that the work is based on secondary sources much of which talk about practices in US companies, and thus the authors are and should be cautious of generalizations. The authors hope, however, that the authors will encourage further empirical research, particularly among organization studies and critical management scholars, on downsizing practices and guilt. For the authors’ part, the authors have tried to offer a critical reflection on how guilt is produced through corporate discourses and practices, and the authors believe that further empirical investigation on the three phases of the downsizing process (as identified in our work) and the lived experience of (un)employment is needed. As corporate downsizing discourses and practices frame (un)employment in strictly individualist and behavioral terms, the authors wish to emphasize the need for further theoretical investigation and political contestation. The authors, therefore, hope that the work will contribute to the relevant literature on downsizing practices and open up the discussions around layoff policies and the structural conditions of (un)employment.

Originality/value

The paper shows that downsizing practices and feelings of guilt are strongly linked to and exemplify the “individualization” of social and political issues such as work and unemployment. The authors suggest that individualization signifies, in some sense, a retreat from organized collective resistance and mobilization based upon class and that the prevalence of the ideology of individualism (and its correlative, meritocracy), over alternative explanations and solutions to such public issues, helps in reproducing existing structures of power and inequity.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 39 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

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Article
Publication date: 8 May 2018

Raluca Alexandra Necula and Stefan Mann

While economists are increasingly acknowledging the importance of distributional issues, the distribution of the consumption of food items has largely been neglected. The…

Abstract

Purpose

While economists are increasingly acknowledging the importance of distributional issues, the distribution of the consumption of food items has largely been neglected. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate that important insights can be obtained by analysing the distribution of consumption of food products within society.

Design/methodology/approach

This study was conducted by analysing food consumption in two very different countries: Romania, a middle-income country and Switzerland, one of the most prosperous countries in the world. In order to test the formulated hypotheses, consumption per capita was calculated, as a base for the calculation of the Gini coefficient of consumption for each product. A mixed effect model was applied for total food and for meat, computing the predictors for the variable “consumption distribution”.

Findings

Using the Gini coefficients of food and drink item consumption by Romanian and Swiss households, the authors tested the hypothesis that in prosperous middle-income countries the homogeneity of food consumption is growing over time as a sign of consumption democratisation, whereas in high-income countries a growing degree of individualisation is leading to decreasing homogeneity. For meat, the bifurcation of consumption patterns between vegetarians and hedonists leads to a growing Gini coefficient over time for both countries. The analysis controls for factors such as the products’ importance in the diet and their price.

Originality/value

The paper approaches a new subject and raises a new research question that may be relevant for structural issues of contemporary society. Both the comparative analysis of food distribution in two different societies and their dynamics is a novelty.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 120 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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