Done – And Hopefully Not Dusted

And perhaps even raise some dust.

Finally the new publication on social services is available:

Herrmann, Peter

The End of Social Services?

Economisation and Managerialism

Studies in Comparative Social Pedagogies and International Social Work and Social Policy, Vol. XIII

The volume provides a critical contribution, looking at the development of social and health services. Though discussing also contemporary issues, the focus is a more fundamental critique, dismantling the ideological questions behind these developments. As such, the profound analysis links well into the context of the critique of capitalism and modernisation. On the other had this is links into some important issues that are commonly forgotten. Talking about the need of general interest is in the political perspective and the defence of social services surely important. However, the elaboration of the argument in the present volume also shows that that engaging in such dispute easily end in a trap: strong contradictions do actually not allow presuming anything like a general interest. The society we are living in is characterised by the ‘general interest’ of profitability, efficiency, managability and the like. And importantly all this is only understood in a short term perspective. As much as the text argues indirectly against methodological individualism, it presents in a first step an argument against methodological contemporariness, the limitation of the current system by the reduction of criteria for defining and assessing social services as matter of short term benefits rather than a commitment to an understanding of complex sustainable social quality.

In addition, one contribution looks in particular at the development of human resources in the UK and in another contribution an analysis of empirical data is provided ­ it looks at the perspective from EU-NGOs active in the sector of social service provision. The book concludes with a contribution compiled by an informal network of various EU-NGOs, looking in an exemplary way at difficulties faced by the recent developments of marketisation and liberalisation.

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