Monthly Archives: February 2012
Posted by jacobam
The logic of managerialism is seen as a rationale for the limited scope for discretion of social workers and also complicates the recognition of the inherently ambiguous nature of social work. In this article, various strategies in dealing with managerialism and ambiguity are identified: social work can either attempt to escape from ambiguity or embrace (the discussion on) ambiguity as an opportunity. It is stated that, although social work can resist a managerial logic, it might also attempt to escape ambiguity all the same. We argue that embracing ambiguity implies an ironical perspective in social work. This refers to an approach in social work that is open and undetermined by its very essence, as it enables social workers to remain sensitive to the complexity of their work and to stay engaged with the public debate about the social and political meaning of their work and its flaws, while simultaneously searching for new, undoubtedly flawed, answers.