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  • 1.
    Basic, Goran
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Pedagogy and Learning.
    Coherent triads and successful inter-professional collaboration: narratives of professional actors in the Swedish child welfare system2019In: Nordic Social Work Research, ISSN 2156-857X, E-ISSN 2156-8588, Vol. 9, no 3, p. 235-249Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The aim of this study is to analyze how and when the professional actors within the Swedish child welfare system portray successful cooperation and determine which discursive patterns are involved in the construction of this phenomenon. The empirical basis for this study is formed by 147 recorded interviews with institution-placed youths, their parents, and different occupational categories within the social services and the Swedish National Board of Institutional Care. Analytical findings with the following themes are presented: (1) coherent vision triad, (2) coherent rhetorically accepted triad, and (3) coherent exclusive triad. The personal interactive aspect of cooperation among professional actors in the care of children is important for successful collaboration. This aspect also appears to be significant for producing and reproducing joint collaboration identities. However, joint collaboration identities and the coherence triad can limit the sphere of cooperation to the entities involved in the care of youths and the juvenile or his/her parents are left out.

  • 2.
    Basic, Goran
    Lund University.
    Ethnic monitoring and social control: Descriptions from juveniles in juvenile care institutions2015In: Nordic Social Work Research, ISSN 2156-857X, E-ISSN 2156-8588, Vol. 5, no 1, p. 20-34Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Previous research has emphasized the institutional racism in total institutions. Researchers have highlighted the importance of narratives but have not focused on narratives about ethnic monitoring and social control. This article tries to fill this gap by analysing stories related to descriptions of ethnic monitoring and social control as told by juveniles of non-Swedish ethnicity in Swedish juvenile care institutions. A juvenile’s ethnicity was highlighted by drawing attention to the staff’s monitoring and social control. Interviews elucidated the victimhood that non-Swedish juveniles portrayed in relation to the staff and/or Swedish juveniles. When juveniles of non-Swedish ethnicity described ethnic monitoring and social control, they generally distanced themselves from staff behaviour and portrayed a victim identity. In constructing their identity, juveniles sometimes used their ethnic background rhetorically when describing everyday situations in the institution. The juveniles portrayed a humiliated self through dissociation from the staff and through the descriptions that they were treated differently than Swedish juveniles.

  • 3.
    Billsten, Johan
    et al.
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, Department of Psychology.
    Benderix, Ylva
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, Department of Psychology.
    Implementation of user organizations in Swedish health care and social services for persons with substance use disorders2019In: Nordic Social Work Research, ISSN 2156-857X, E-ISSN 2156-8588Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background: In Sweden, the National Guidelines for Substance Abuse Treatment includes new recommendations concerning integrating a user perspective. From 2009 to 2014, the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare supported and financed the development of organizations serving regional users. The programme was evaluated, and the results showed a development of user influence in substance use treatment services in 20 out of 21 regions by 2014. The implementation of user organizations’ influence was evaluated in 2018 for this follow-up study.

    Aim: The aim of this four-year follow-up study was to evaluate whether user organizations continued existing once national support ended, and whether their influence in social services and health care, at both organizational and individual levels had been implemented.

    Method: A questionnaire was dispatched to 20 regional user organizations. It included information and questions focused on their situation, and on participants’ experiences of the influence of user organizations in health care and social service.

    Results: The results obtained from the questionnaire show that 14 out of 20 user organizations still existed and reported a developed influence in social services and health care at organizational and individual levels. National support was perceived as necessary for the ongoing development of user organizations and to continue increasing their influence.

    Conclusions: Support at the national level initiated the development of user influence in Sweden, which has increased at both organizational and individual levels in the context of social services, as well as in health care for persons with substance use disorders.

  • 4.
    Enell, Sofia
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
    Young people in limbo: perceptions of self-presentations when being assessed in secure accommodation2015In: Nordic Social Work Research, ISSN 2156-857X, E-ISSN 2156-8588, Vol. 6, no 1, p. 22-37Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In Sweden, young people are assessed in institutions at the request of the social services, a situation that can be described as being in limbo, in a state of uncertainty. Using the concepts of self-presentation and institutional processes in total institutions, this research aims to analyse young people’s perceptions of being assessed in secure accommodation. The empirical material consists of repeated interviews with 16 adolescents assessed in secure accommodation. Three situations were identified in which the young people felt that their self-presentations were in some way in or out of their control: the placement situation; the assessment situation and the assessment-outcome situation. The youths perceived their self-presentations to be influenced by the setting (i.e., the institution). In addition, there were two parts to being in limbo: being on site in the institution and being distant from the social services. The young people’s experience of being assessed in an institution was characterized by feelings of a loss of control over self-presentation and of their perceptions of themselves.

  • 5.
    Gustafsson, Kristina
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
    Selective parenting programs for parents with foreign backgrounds: Cultural imperialism or democratic practicies in social work2019In: Nordic Social Work Research, ISSN 2156-857X, E-ISSN 2156-8588, p. 1-13Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In focus of this article are two selective parenting programs, both developed locally by Social Services and by a Women´s Shelter organisation in Sweden. Parents with a foreign background is the target group. Their needs are formulated in terms of `change values based on patriarchal beliefs in honour´. In the article the programs are described in relation to universal evidence-based parenting programs and a also a three-part dilemma of 1; offering preventative but also normative interventions to 2; selected target groups and 3; based on the idea that migrant parents have special needs due to cultural differences. The aim is to investigate in what ways the practices of conducting parenting programs for this target group could be framed as cultural imperialistic practices or democratic practices in social work. Cultural imperialism leads to oppression while democratic practices are emancipatory. A conclusion is that both practices are apparent and concurrent. Yet the dualism dismantles the risk of reproducing oppression of the selected target group. Another conclusion is that instead of defining parents with foreign backgrounds as culturally different the target group could be defined as a group with migration experience e. g. experience of leaving the home country and family and finding ways of resettlement in a receiving country. Selective parent programs are relevant but an alternative definition would promote democratic practice, where authorities and social workers meet the demands of the participating parents on their own terms, and with the goal, not to change ‘unwished cultural differences’ but to support empowerment.

  • 6.
    Hultman, Elin
    et al.
    University of Gothenburg .
    Forkby, Torbjörn
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
    Höjer, Staffan
    University of Gothenburg .
    Professionalised, hybrid, and layperson models in Nordic child protection: actors in decision-making in out of home placements2018In: Nordic Social Work Research, ISSN 2156-857X, E-ISSN 2156-8588, p. 1-16Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Decisions about child protection and interventions in families are one of the most difficult responsibilities of welfare states. The aim of this article is to describe and analyse the commonalities and differences in the child protection decision-making systems in Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Denmark. We focus on the actors involved, especially the laypersons, and their role in the decision-making process when deciding on out-of home placements, both on voluntary and coercive grounds. 

    The study is based on a comprehensive analysis of official documents, legislation, guidelines, and reports about child protection in each country together with a review of recent research in the area. This is complemented by 12 interviews with key informants with knowledge about the child protection systems in their respective countries. 

    We found that there is an expanding influence from external experts and dwindling influence from laypersons. We discuss the organisation in terms of three different decision-making models – a professionalised decision-making model in Finland, a hybrid decision-making model in Norway and Denmark, and a layperson decision-making model in Sweden. One conclusion is that all of the countries aim for children to be involved and for decisions to be made in compliance with the rule of law, but this is realised quite differently when it comes to which actors should be given the authority to make the decisions. Which model is the best would have different answers depending on which perspective the models are evaluated from. However, the consequences of decisionmaking models for children need to be studied further. 

  • 7.
    Kullberg, Christian
    et al.
    Mälardalen University.
    Skillmark, Mikael
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
    The significance of position for Swedish social workers’ understanding of young men’s victimization of violence2017In: Nordic Social Work Research, ISSN 2156-857X, E-ISSN 2156-8588, Vol. 7, no 1, p. 54-66Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Violence against women and men is a widespread and serious social problem, often with severe consequences for the victims. Even though young men are among those most at risk of exposure to physical violence, men’s victimization is only recognized to a limited extent. The aim of this study is to deepen our understanding of how social workers’ interpretation of the position of males in the gender order affects their understanding of male victimization. The study was designed as a multiple case study with a qualitative comparative approach. Focus group interviews supported by vignettes were used to collect data. Interviews were carried out with professional Swedish social workers working with victimized men and women at centres for young crime victims in Sweden. The results show that even though the social workers express traditional gender beliefs about young men’s experiences of victimization and their inability to identify themselves as victims of violence, they also to some extent resist taken-forgranted notions of male victimization. The results also show that the social workers to some extent offer supportive measures that reinforce traditional expectations of masculinity. On the basis of the results it is suggested that one important way of developing social work with young male victims of violence would be to give greater attention to variations between different men and masculinities and how these different forms of masculinity are differently connected to crime and violence, and to adapt supportive measures to reflect these differences.

  • 8.
    Liljegren, Andreas
    et al.
    University of Gothenburg.
    Höjer, Staffan
    University of Gothenburg.
    Forkby, Torbjörn
    University of Gothenburg.
    ‘I don’t want to tell you how to do your job, but …’: laypersons challenging the jurisdiction of professionals in Swedish child protection2018In: Nordic Social Work Research, ISSN 2156-857X, E-ISSN 2156-8588, Vol. 8, no 1, p. 50-63Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In the early days of professionalism, occupations were characterised by decision-making freedoms and strong jurisdictional rights. Since then, several ways of controlling and monitoring professionals have been introduced alongside the rise and reformulations of the modern welfare state. Professions have been challenged by, bureaucracy, market solutions and demands for transparency. These are examples of systematically developed counterforces to professional autonomy. A much less studied way of controlling and monitoring professionals is the institution of laypersons, which finds its legitimacy on the grounds that non-experts play the superior role to professionals. Through layperson committees, Swedish child protection advocates have extensive rights when deciding upon some of the most intrusive decisions that the state can make against families, namely, whether children are to be removed from their parents. This article analyses how laypersons challenge the authority of professionals in Swedish child protection. It is based on observations of layperson committees and semi-structured interviews with committee members. The results show that the jurisdictional boundaries are constructed in relation to groupthink, where the laypersons can be the cure for social workers developing unprofessional behaviours and remain as outsiders to the professionals. Another important finding of the study is the ambivalence and paradoxes that arise when it comes to understanding the layperson’s role in relation to at least five topics: formal training; identity as a professional, theoretical knowledge; the normative field laypersons should relate to; and the layperson’s impact. The ambivalence of the ideological boundaries can be seen as a weakness for the layperson.

  • 9.
    Skillmark, Mikael
    et al.
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
    Denvall, Verner
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
    The standardizers: social workers' role when implementing assessment tools in the Swedish social services2018In: Nordic Social Work Research, ISSN 2156-857X, E-ISSN 2156-8588, Vol. 8, no 1, p. 88-99Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Standardisation and standards are common in the modern world, including in social work. This article focuses on social workers who implement the assessment tool Children’s needs in focus (Barns behov i centrum BBIC) in Swedish social work with children and families. Inspired by ‘siblings’ in the UK, the National Board of Health and Welfare has developed and supported the implementation of the BBIC. From the start, the implementation strategy was to engage well-educated and experienced social workers as educators. The article studies these educators (standardizers) as mediators between national imperatives and local practice during the implementation of the BBIC in the social services. Based on interviews with 10 BBIC educators, three standardizer roles were identified: the instrumental, the adaptive and the transformative. These roles affect the practice of social work in potentially different ways.

  • 10.
    Ulmestig, Rickard
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
    Two sides of the coin – Domestic violence survivors' expectations of financial support and social workers’ expectations of survivors within the social assistance system2018In: Nordic Social Work Research, ISSN 2156-857X, E-ISSN 2156-8588Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article is based on an interview study with thirteen survivors of domestic violence and ten social workers within the social assistance system. This article aims to understand how applications for social assistance from survivors are handled between the discretionary powers of the social workers, the organization’s fixed categories and the survivors’ need for support. Theories of street-level bureaucracy and human service organizations was used in the analysis. The results show that social workers state that they treat survivors with respect and generosity. Survivors said they wanted to meet a committed social worker, which was not the case for many of the survivors interviewed. Categorizing the ‘right’ kind of survivor is of great significance for being eligible to social assistance.

  • 11.
    Vingare, Emme-Li
    et al.
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
    Giertz, Lottie
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
    Melin Emilsson, Ulla
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
    Do national guidelines have any impact?: a comparison of nine Swedish municipalities and the Dementia care2018In: Nordic Social Work Research, ISSN 2156-857X, E-ISSN 2156-8588, p. 1-15Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Living with dementia, care and social care systems The aim of this article is to find out what impact national guidelines have on municipality dementia care. Furthermore, the aim is to compare organization of social care to the local adaptation of nationally invoked values. This article is connected to Living with dementia, care and social care systems , an interdisciplinary project between Health Sciences at Lund University and Social Sciences at Linnaeus University. The national guidelines for care and services to people with dementia recommend specialized units, and professional specialization in dementia care. Based on values of self-determination, integrity, accessibility, equity, rights and safety, they are meant to guide the dementia care in the community. In this article the organization of care is compared to how nationally invoked values are discussed in local policy documents in nine municipalities. These two aspects of dementia care are central to the national guidelines. The organization of care was explored by a mapping study of 19 municipality services. Type of organization was determined based on when, throughout the progression of the disease, services were made available, the existence of specialized dementia care units, and level of professional specialization. Information about values in local policies was examined by utilizing policy as discourse analysis of local policy documents. Four types of relationships between organization and value implementation were found. Eight out of nine municipalities failed to adapt to both aspects of the national guidelines.

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