Everyday realities and visionary ideals among social workers in the Nordic countries: A matter of specialization and work tasks?

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Everyday realities and visionary ideals among social workers in the Nordic countries: A matter of specialization and work tasks?

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Publication Article, peer reviewed scientific
Title Everyday realities and visionary ideals among social workers in the Nordic countries: A matter of specialization and work tasks?
Author(s) Meeuwisse, Anna ; Scaramuzzino, Roberto ; Swärd, Hans
Date 2011
English abstract
Although social workers can be regarded as the practical interpreters and implementing actors of social policies, little is known about their attitudes to their working conditions and to ongoing social-political trends, especially in a comparative Nordic perspective. In this article the present conditions for social work is studied on the basis of a questionnaire distributed to a representative sample of social workers in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden. The questionnaire was answered by a total of 5554 respondents, which represents a response frequency of 60%. In addition to some general discussions based on the answers of the entire population of respondents, the article particularly focuses on social workers in municipal social services (N = 3018). Our most important result is that social workers' attitudes seem to vary to a certain extent if different fields of specialization within municipal social services are compared, and that these tendencies appear in all the Nordic countries. Those who work with financial support are more dissatisfied with their work situation and are somewhat more positive to sanctions and restrictions aimed at the clients than their colleagues in the other fields. They are also more inclined to explain poverty with reference to individual deficiencies.
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/2156857X.2011.562030 (link to publisher's fulltext)
Publisher Routledge
Host/Issue Nordic Social Work Research;1
Volume 1
ISSN 2156-8588
Pages 5-23
Language eng (iso)
Subject(s) Nordic social workers
Nordic model in social work
attitudes
work situations
specialization
Humanities/Social Sciences
Research Subject Categories::SOCIAL SCIENCES
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/12797 (link to this page)

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