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  • 1.
    Ahlgren, Thorbjörn
    Linnéuniversitetet, Växjö.
    Institutionalisering på hemmaplan: En idés resa i den sociala barnavården2014Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis describes and analyses in three substudies how home-based measures for children are expanding and why an open care idea are established as part of the Swedish child welfare. The first substudy describes the national increment of what today can be considered as a treatment policy – non-institutional care in child welfare. The results are analysed with Kingdon's agenda setting theory and shows that the factors of what Kingdon describes as problems-, politics- and policyflow influenced the national increment. Significant mechanisms have primarily been, the profession, the society's concerns for socially disadvantaged children, negative experiences of institutionalisation and a political position to deinstitutionalise all care. The second substudy focuses on how knowledge and research contributes to ideological, professional, and organizational change in child welfare by analysis of Research & Developments reports and articles from the professional journal Socionomen. Based on the neo-institutional concepts of organisational fields and isoformism the study's results shows that a consequence of adaptation strategies and "rationalized myths" are a number of similarities in how home-based measures are organized and which measures that are used. The third substudy, a case study, analyses how we can understand a local development of ideas in social services for children with concepts from neo institutional theory. Interviews and municipal documents are analysed and shows that the local translation of an open care idea is characterized by discretion, personal preferences and action and affects the choice of method and organization. The study also shows a political mistrust of institutional care while there is at the same time political confidence in the individual social worker's ability to find solutions that allow non-institutional measures to be an alternative to institutional care.

    An overall conclusion of the thesis is that there is now a treatment policy in social services for the children, which involves extensive efforts at home and it has led to that more children receive support from social services. One result of non-institutional care increment is that it led to increased costs for municipalities for intervention for children and young people when out-of-home care has not decreased. Another general conclusion is that translation and adaptation of ideas to local contexts is something that generally fits street-level bureaucrats need for discretion.

     

  • 2.
    Ahlgren, Thorbjörn
    Institutionen för vårdvetenskap och socialt arbete, Växjö universitet .
    Ungdomsbehandling: Hemmaplanslösning som idé och praktik2007Licentiate thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This dissertation is a case study in two parts, which describes how ideas about open-care treatment of youth aged 13-20 years are interpreted and concretized in a local context. The study, i.a., aims at creating deeper knowledge about target group, content of treatment, and reported results concerning a form of treatment in social care which has hitherto been sparsely researched in Sweden. The results of the interview study demonstrate that the driving forces for developing local forms of open care treatments have first and foremost been to offer better care and to improve the professionalism of the social worker. Studies of the social welfare documents of 97 young people reveal that most of these youngsters are in bad need of treatment and that they have experiences of various kinds of treatment before the present efforts. The study also demonstrates that the efforts are rarely evaluated and lack systematic documentation. Finally, the study reveals that more than 60 per cent of the youth get some sort of continuous support by the social welfare system after the open-care treatment has come to an end. The results from both parts of the study are analysed by means of neo- institutional theory. According to this theory the local open-care treatment consists of an indistinct target group, family-oriented methods, and activities that have been legitimised by strong proponents, good timing, professional development, and by representing important political values.

    In conclusion, the author argues that open care treatment shows signs of a beginning institutionalisation, a taken-for-granted-ness, which he thinks is risky, as we still do not know if open-care treatment is more favourable to the young people than different kinds of 24-hour care. In addition, the author holds, that the future role of the social worker should include knowledge that decreases unfounded taken-for-granted ideas. 

  • 3.
    Nilsson, Gunilla
    et al.
    Jönköping University, School of Health Science, HHJ, Dep. of Behavioural Science and Social Work.
    Ahlgren, Thorbjörn
    Jönköping University, School of Health Science, HHJ, Luppen research and development centre.
    Möte mellan fält och forskning: Kunskapsutvecklingens roll inom projektarbete2003Report (Other academic)
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