Ethnocentrisms in Knowledge Production: The Role of the Welfare Expert in the Social Services

By Eileen Oak.

Published by The Organization Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This presentation analyses explores the interconnecting themes of knowledge, culture and change by examining the impact of the knowledge economy on the organization of welfare. It adopts as its specific focus the role of the welfare ‘expert’ in the social services. This is contextualised within the New Labour government’s social exclusion policies, the global knowledge economy and concepts of cultural capital within knowledge production. This issue is important because of the contemporary debates about new classes of knowledge produces and claims made about the increased democratisation of knowledge (Giddens 1996). In making an evaluation it considers the impact of cultural capital and the knowledge economy on the organisational culture of the public social services. It then asks whether these developments enhance social inclusion policies and if not what barriers exist to reduce effective service provision for socially excluded service users by examining the situation of gypsy welfare recipients.

Keywords: Ethnocentricism, Knowledge Economy, Knolwdge Production, Social Inclusion and Exclusion, Cultural Capital

International Journal of Knowledge, Culture and Change Management, Volume 8, Issue 7, pp.69-78. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 569.926KB).

Dr. Eileen Oak

Lecturer, School of Community, Health Sciences and Social Care, Salford University, Salford, UK

Lecturer in the social work on the degree and masters degree programmes. Specialising in child care social work, social work theories, skills and methods for practice and social policy. Particular research interests include: the impact of social constructionism in the natural sciences, the contribution of qualitative social research to the development of new normative foundations in the social sciences, and the impact of biomedical discourses on social work and social policy research.


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