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Decoupling managerial audit: Evidence from the local authority children's homes sector

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Publication details

JournalInternational Journal of Public Sector Management
DatePublished - 1 Jan 1999
Issue number4
Volume12
Number of pages13
Pages (from-to)338-350
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Within discussions of the "new public management" (NPM) it is suggested that professionals increasingly face managerial initiatives that are designed to reduce their autonomy and monitor their work. This paper draws on study data from the local authority children's homes sector to assess Power's predictions regarding the "colonisation" and "decoupling" of management audits within professional state agencies. The findings suggest that the introduction of a managerial audit in children's residential social work has involved a complex, negotiated and uneven process in which older patterns of autonomy have proved to be resilient. A key outcome has been the sometimes ritualistic and partial implementation of the audit process.

    Research areas

  • Children, Managerial audit, Public administration, Resistance, Social services

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