Dilemmas for Human Services 2013: Beyond the Public Sector - cooperation and competition with the private & third sectors

Dilemmas for Human Services 2013

Beyond the Public Sector: Cooperation & Competition with the Private & Third sectors

16th International Research Conference

To be hosted by Staffordshire University, Science Centre, Stoke-on-Trent
5th-6th September 2013

Keynote Speakers:
Martin Parker (recent editor of Organization: The Critical Journal of Organization, Theory and Society).
Tony Stewart (Professor of Public Health)

Second Call for Papers

This Conference, organised jointly by Staffordshire University, the University of East London and the University of Lulea, provides a forum for policy, organisational and critical sociological analyses of the dilemmas facing the organisation and delivery of health, housing, education, social services and the human services generally.

The theme of this next conference concerns the promise and perils of cooperation and competition a set of issues that are central to human services at the present time and in the foreseeable future. Government policy in the UK, for example, is heavily promoting partnerships between public, private and voluntary organisations – a scenario that is reflected elsewhere in Europe and North America. With some initiatives, like free schools, the challenge is one of competition, similarly in health with ‘Any Qualified Provider’ being able to contribute to the delivery of NHS services. Elsewhere, partnership between public and the third sector is vital for the delivery of human services, for example in sports, housing, long-term social care. More recently, we see the private provision of employment services and mentoring for recently released prisoners. Many of these UK examples reflect developments already underway in North America, and similar examples are to be found within other European societies.

These policy changes radically change the relations between different providers, professionals, citizens and users, creating a new complex system of service delivery.  We invite research papers relating to the problems and issues faced by public, private and voluntary sector organisations and the state in tackling the problems of collaborative working (locally, regionally and globally), as well the ethical issues concerning access, equity and quality of service.  We would especially encourage papers that discuss the following:

*   Contested issues for policy, governance and leadership.
*   User involvement and citizen engagement.
*   Implications for gender, ethnicity, disability and class inequalities.
*   The democratic deficit: is there a future for deliberative democracy?
*   New social movements, social media and networks.
*   Questioning the integrative role of information systems

Papers on other related topics will also welcomed for consideration by the conference organisers.

This is the 16th International 'Dilemmas' Conference.  Previous conferences have produced a number of publications, including Gender and the Public Sector (Routledge 2003), Questioning the New Public Management (Ashgate 2004) and special editions of the International Journal of Public Sector Management (2003) and Public Policy and Politics (2005) as well as further planned volumes. It is intended that a selection of papers from this conference will also form the basis for an edited collection or a special edition of a journal.  Each conference also provides participants with a free copy of proceedings.

Anyone interested in contributing a paper should submit a one-page abstract (400 words) to the Conference Organisers.  The deadline for abstracts is the 27 May 2013.  Decision on acceptance, following the refereeing process will be notified by mid-June.

For further information please contact the conference organisers:
Mike Dent, Steve Suckling  and Jim Radcliffe,
Faculty of Health Sciences,
Staffordshire University,
Blackheath Lane,
Stafford, ST18 0AD,
United Kingdom
Phone:                 +44(0)1785 353766
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