Innovation and Patchwork Partnerships: Advice Services in Austere Times

22 Pages Posted: 26 Oct 2017 Last revised: 23 Dec 2017

Date Written: October 20, 2017

Abstract

English Abstract: In the UK’s austerity regime, government spending has been slashed, while audit regimes tie up officers of charitable organisations in bureaucracy rather than leaving them free to attend to the substance of their jobs. These funding-cuts-masquerading-as-market-based-restructuring have drastically affected the provision of advice to welfare dependents. But advisers, and the organisations they work for, do not give up without a struggle. They piece together new patchworks of funds, devise new forms of face-to-face advice, and rework the boundaries of the law. Local authority funds are invested to yield returns from centrally-funded sources. People are helped to honour their tax commitments while challenging debts incurred from the incorrect award and reclaim of benefits, and to pay their council tax and rent. For advisers, austerity is more a matter of seeking new resource flows, inventing novel interventions, and creating new spaces where justice may be sought and found, than of passively accepting funding cuts.

Spanish Abstract: En el Reino Unido, las políticas de recortes de fondos maquilladas como restructuraciones basadas en el mercado han afectado drásticamente la provisión a los dependientes de la asistencia social. Pero los asesores y las organizaciones para las que trabajan forman nuevos tejidos de fondos financieros, ingenian nuevas formas de ayudar en persona y reconfiguran los límites de la ley. Los fondos financieros de los gobiernos locales se invierten para obtener réditos de fuentes de financiación centralizada. Se ayuda a la gente a cumplir con sus obligaciones fiscales y, al mismo tiempo, a recortar las deudas generadas por una incorrecta concesión y reclamación de prestaciones, y a pagar sus tasas municipales y sus alquileres. Para los asesores, la austeridad es una cuestión de buscar nuevos flujos de recursos, idear nuevas formas de intervención y crear nuevos espacios en los que la justicia pueda ser buscada y hallada.

Keywords: Advice services, austerity, innovation, United Kingdom, Servicios de asistencia, austeridad, innovación, Reino Unido

Suggested Citation

Forbess, Alice and James, Deborah, Innovation and Patchwork Partnerships: Advice Services in Austere Times (October 20, 2017). Oñati Socio-Legal Series, Vol. 7, No. 7, 2017. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3056205

Alice Forbess

Independent

No Address Available

Deborah James (Contact Author)

LSE ( email )

United Kingdom

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