Regulating Social Welfare Services: Between Compliance and Learning

Forthcoming in International Journal of Social Welfare

26 Pages Posted: 12 Sep 2018

See all articles by Avishai Benish

Avishai Benish

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - The Baerwald School of Social Work and Social Welfare

Dana Halevy

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Paul Baerwald School of Social Work

Shimon Spiro

Tel Aviv University

Date Written: November 5, 2017

Abstract

With the ongoing privatisation and marketisation of social welfare, the regulatory functions of governments have become much more important, necessitating careful attention. Yet there is little scholarly work on the goals and nature of regulating privatised social welfare services. To fill this gap, this study examined the regulatory process used by the Israeli Youth Protection Authority (YPA) to regulate homes for at-risk youth. Based on 24 semi-structured interviews with inspectors and staff, the article highlights the YPA’s distinctive learning-based and collaborative approach to regulating social welfare services. This approach puts the capacity-building of professional skills, rather than compliance, at the centre of the regulatory mission and leaves room for professional discretion to the homes and the inspectors. The article outlines the distinctive features of this approach, considering its advantages and shortcomings in comparison with the more legalistic and audit-based approaches currently dominating the field of social care inspection.

Keywords: privatisation, regulation, social welfare services, inspection, regulatory welfare state, residential care, Youth Protection Authority

Suggested Citation

Benish, Avishai and Halevi, Dana and Spiro, Shimon, Regulating Social Welfare Services: Between Compliance and Learning (November 5, 2017). Forthcoming in International Journal of Social Welfare , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3241081

Avishai Benish (Contact Author)

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - The Baerwald School of Social Work and Social Welfare ( email )

Jerusalem
Israel

Dana Halevi

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Paul Baerwald School of Social Work ( email )

Jerusalem
Israel

Shimon Spiro

Tel Aviv University ( email )

Ramat Aviv
Tel-Aviv, 6997801
Israel

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