These brief comments reveal that we cannot start this study of the individualisation of activation services with the assumption that the meaning of the notion of individualisation is clear and unambiguous and requires no further analysis. Like most discussions on social security, the discussion on the erosion of the traditional family is concerned with financial aspects and the desirability of labour market participation. In its broader sense the roots of the wider discussions of democracy extend back nearly 3,000 years, although the seeds of the current discussion are traced to the early 1970s when concrete forms of participation were being created social planning, community development. As a matter of fact, if someone lives in a deprived area where training centres are scarce or of bad quality, she does not enjoy the same opportunity set as another person living in a rich area with lots of high-quality training opportunities. The analytical intention with these propositions is to shed light on the ways in which states govern through, and not in spite of, the autonomous choices of individuals Rose, 2000, p 324.
The public sphere is the site for the continuous contestation of public purposes and this means that questions regarding values and policies saturate all public organizations, particularly at the point of delivery. On an 26 Individualising activation services: thrashing out an ambiguous concept empirical level it relates to the growth of one-person households, the growing number of new marriages entered into by people through their life, the growing labour market participation of women and the general individualisation of relations within the family. The chapters in Part One deal with various issues that are relevant in the context of debates on individualised services from a theoretical perspective. This article elaborates some of the different roots and usages of governance and interrogates the utility of the concept for the discipline and study of social policy. In contrast, an explicitly redistributive approach would concentrate resources and policy efforts on the most rather than the least excluded, seeking explicitly to overturn job-market inequities through anti-discrimination measures, targeted assistance, high-quality education and training, fair benefits, the extension of social rights in the workplace, and so forth. The lack of clearly defined rights to access is also the key difference to social benefits, especially insurance-based benefits. Questo processo di personalizzazione, pur non essendo avulso da elementi di ambivalenza a seconda delle modalità in cui si realizza Vitale 2005 , iscrive comunque anche gli interventi nei confronti di questi gruppi nella più complessiva spinta all'attivazione che carat- terizza oggi le politiche sociali Borghi, van Berkel, 2007.
How Dutch local welfare agencies cope with policy and governance reforms. This article describes how processes of decentralisation in Dutch Social Assistance in the context of activating the Dutch welfare state are determined by two core objectives: on the one hand, to give local authorities more autonomy in designing and delivering activation services; on the other hand, to ensure that national social policy objectives are implemented at the local level. Privatisation in some cases means that a lot of public money disappears into private organisations in an unverifiable way. But even when it does, effectiveness can mean different things. Finally, the chapter raises the issue of the relevance of the social policy context in shaping the nature of user involvement, by exploring the links between type of social services on the one hand, and the kind of user involvement likely to develop on the other. The starting point is where they meet, that is, in the dialogue between the professional who delivers activation policies and the individual citizen.
The same is reflected in the social protection 94 User involvement in personal social services policies boosted by the European Union. The political status of the European discourse: persuasive regulation and ideological articulation The processes of seeking responses to the crisis in the labour market have been taking on an increasingly European dimension. Only under these conditions will a market contribute to the autonomy of citizens and to efficient provision of services. The European institutions did not invent these concepts, but it is by them that they have been popularised, so that they have become official terms in standard usage for the structuring of discussions and naming and understanding of the problems. In modern society the individual lives of people are more and more characterised by differences. This chapter addresses what students of activation can learn from Beck.
As said above, the fourth discourse shares many elements with the third, including the way in which citizens are put in charge. . To sum up, Beck identifies a set of themes that mark out the contours of how welfare states can organise activation services to best promote radical individualisation and social entrepreneurship. The question is no longer to look for ways to restrict help and make it conditional, or to expect certain attitudes and actions from the poor and the unemployed. Our focus in the book will be on one particular kind of social services: activation services, that is, social services aimed at promoting the employability and labour market participation of unemployed 3 Making it personal people.
Social policy and labour market researchers have mainly focussed on studying and evaluating changes in substantial policy like programs, instruments, and service delivery , while public management and public governance researchers have studied the steering and implementation structure organisation and management. The primary task for the institutions of the welfare state is to get people who are on benefits back into the labour market as soon as possible. The 1980s and 1990s were full of intelligent rhetoric and also empirical research about welfare regimes and models, but almost none of them were based on services. These new forms of governance are often legitimated, although not always necessarily motivated see Clarke and Newman, 1997 , by pointing to the need to improve the accessibility, responsiveness and quality of social services on the one hand, and to reconsider the role of citizensas-service-users in the provision of services and their position vis-àvis service providers on the other. Put in very general terms, individualisation of social service provision means that services should be adjusted to individual circumstances in order to increase their effectiveness. Those being considered as capable risk managers, with skills and competencies to develop in a flexible labour market, are often required to fulfil some broader duties and requirements. Our analysis will be conducted in two stages.
This book has set out to investigate the importance of business to contemporary developments in social policy. In the 1960s and 1970s, however, the struggle was not to get rid of the provisions of the welfare state. The second part aims to briefly introduce the papers included in this issue. They are given little chance to bring in their own definitions, analyses and strategies, and thus they confront the situation in a more or less calculating way. This paper develops the concept of subject position in relation to the theory of justification and the concept of modality in order to achieve a more sensitive and nuanced analysis of the politics of welfare in public debates. However, in Finland there are three examples — childcare services for all children under school age, certain housing services for disabled people and a flat-rate, 96 User involvement in personal social services means-tested social assistance for everybody meeting the national minimum income norm.
The shift from passive to active welfare states and the introduction of new forms of governance have had — and still have — radical consequences, not only for policy users but also for those involved in delivering and providing social services: managers as well as social workers and case managers. For some groups this means that activation policy should limit the extent to which they are in charge of their own lives. So far the strive to individualise activation policy leads to a situation that is primarily characterised by confusion, contradictions and unanswered questions. Decentralisation may be necessary in order to make social services more effective and tailor made, but it certainly is not free from risks. She now works as a social policy consultant in the German Parliament. Furthermore, this argument does not mean that all the other discourses are irrelevant. Contemporary citizens are discursively constituted as responsible agents and encouraged and enforced to be capable and obliged to handle social risks of different kinds and their own future welfare Dwyer, 1999.
Furthermore, there must be a real choice. They should be actively involved in their own adaptation to changing circumstances and the demands that these changing circumstances put on them. In most countries privatisation and market regulation do not mean that central government is handing over control to the market, on the contrary. Rik van Berkel is researcher and lecturer at the Department of Interdisciplinary Social Science, Utrecht University, the Netherlands. This results in a growing influence of local political relations on the rights and duties of local citizens, and thus in politically determined differences in how these rights and duties are interpreted. His research interests include unemployment, comparative social and activation policies and public governance. Statutory subjective rights to services are relatively rare.
This market puts them in the position of a customer, who will be able to find an offer that meets their demand. Thus, institutions and frontline workers should have freedom to provide special solutions for specifi c circumstances. Social policies are not only about how things are, but also about how they should be and thus what people should do. Peeling back the political rhetoric and technical policy jargon, these studies investigate what really goes on in the name of workfare and activation policies and what that means for the poor, unemployed, and marginalized populations subject to these policies. These different strands may be very helpful dimensions that visualise different focuses and different tools and show also how these strands hold both traditional and modern elements. However, the new element of economic constraints has put professionals in a new situation.