Striving for technical solutions

  • Mike Simpkin
Part of the Crisis Points book series


Now that our functions appear to be defined within our agency, rather than the social work of agencies being determined by a limited official function, it has become more urgent and also more difficult first to decide what it is that social workers actually do, and secondly to justify it in face of mounting criticism. Our seeming inability to live up to the claims which have been made for us has prompted some cynics to shudder when they hear of attempts at evaluation, lest the newly-crowned emperor of public welfare is revealed in mortifying nudity.


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Notes and references

  1. 1.
    Brunei Institute of Organisational and Social Studies, Social Services Departments (1974) p. 42.Google Scholar
  2. 3.
    Rosemary Stewart, quoted by A. Gatherer and M. Warren, Management and the Health Services (Oxford: Pergamon, 1971) p. 30.Google Scholar
  3. 4.
    R. G. S. Brown, ‘Policy Analysis and the Welfare State’, in W. D. Reekie and N. C. Hunt (eds), Management in the Social and Safety Services (London: Tavistock, 1974) p. 180.Google Scholar
  4. 6.
    Cf. F. McDermott, Self Determination in Social Work (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1975).Google Scholar
  5. 8.
    T. Johnson, Professions and Power (London: Macmillan, 1972) p. 45. Much of this account is drawn from Johnson’s analysis.Google Scholar
  6. 9.
    J. H. Galper, The Politics of Social Services (New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 1975) p. 60.Google Scholar
  7. 10.
    E. M. Goldberg, Helping the Aged (London: Allen and Unwin, 1970).Google Scholar
  8. See the correspondence in Community Care, April to July 1977.Google Scholar
  9. 10.
    E. M. Goldberg, Helping the Aged (London: Allen and Unwin, 1970).Google Scholar
  10. 12.
    Bill Jordan, Poor Parents (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1974) p. 150.Google Scholar
  11. 13.
    J. Packman, Decisions in Child Care (London: Allen and Unwin, 1969);Google Scholar
  12. B. Davies, I. Barton, A. Macmillan, Variations in Children’s Services (London: Bell, 1972).Google Scholar
  13. 14.
    V. George, Foster Care (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1970) p. 141.Google Scholar
  14. 19.
    J. H. Skolnick and J. R. Woodworth, ‘Bureaucracy, Information and Social Control’, in D. J. Bodua (ed.), The Police, Six Sociological Essays (London: Wiley, 1967);Google Scholar
  15. quoted by M. Cain, ‘On the Beat’, in S. Cohen (ed.), Images of Deviance (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1971) p. 74.Google Scholar
  16. 20.
    Z. Butrym, The Nature of Social Work (London: Macmillan, 1976) p. 146.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 21.
    Kay McDougall, Obligations of a Profession’, Social Work Today, vol. 1, no. 6, September 1970, p. 20.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Mike Simpkin 1979

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  • Mike Simpkin

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