Nanna Mik-Meyer
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The market context
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This chapter focuses on market values and takes a closer look at how service and other ideals affect the encounter between citizens and welfare workers. It introduces the market context and its inherent principles, followed by a discussion of how the marketisation of public administration lays the groundwork for a number of challenges and dilemmas for both welfare workers and citizens. The chapter covers the ways in which the standards, benchmarks, guidelines, incentive structures and other aspects of new public management (NPM), combined with business values such as competition, choice and flexibility, have affected the encounter between the welfare worker and the citizen. Within the frame of NPM, both producers and consumers of welfare services are seen as driven by self-interest. The chapter discusses the role of the soft power of equality and courtesy in these idealised service encounters and concludes with a discussion on agency in market-inspired welfare work.

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The power of citizens and professionals in welfare encounters

The influence of bureaucracy, market and psychology


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