Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/18565
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Social Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: The Big Society and the 'Mutualisation' of Public Services: A Critical Commentary
Authors: Birchall, Johnston
Contact Email: johnston.birchall@stir.ac.uk
Issue Date: Sep-2011
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Citation: Birchall J (2011) The Big Society and the 'Mutualisation' of Public Services: A Critical Commentary, Political Quarterly, 82 (Supplement s1), pp. 145-157.
Abstract: First paragraph: The attempt to devolve public services to ‘employee mutuals' is one element in the political agenda known as the ‘Big Society'. This specific policy initiative by the coalition government is surrounded by a broader interest in the idea of ‘mutuality' or ‘mutualism' as a new political principle encapsulating the idea of a revised relationship between the state and civil society. The promoters of the idea refer back to a time before the welfare state when ‘mutuals' such as friendly societies provided a radically different approach to meeting the needs of citizens based on self-help and mutual aid. For instance, in his Hugo Young memorial lecture in 2009, David Cameron described how an ‘ethos of mutuality' was present when the welfare state was created, a ‘vibrant panoply' of civic organisations such as cooperatives, friendly societies, building societies and guilds. He drew from this the lesson that the state had subsequently squeezed out self-help and mutual responsibility, and that it has to become an instrument for giving power back to society.
Type: Journal Article
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/18565
DOI Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-923X.2011.02333.x
Rights: The publisher does not allow this work to be made publicly available in this Repository. Please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author. You can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study.
Affiliation: Sociology/Social Pol&Criminology

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