Archives for August 31st, 2000

A MODEST MANIFESTO FOR SHATTERING THE GLASS CEILING

Abstracts, PublicNet: 31 August, 2000

Meyerson D E, Fletcher J KHarvard Business Review, (USA), Jan-Feb 2000 Vol 78 No 1

Start page: 127 No of pages: 10

Asks why women remain a rarity at the highest levels of management despite increased corporate sensitivity and legal sanctions against discrimination. Identifies a pattern of subtle systemic discrimination which, it is argued, will not be overcome by altering the way individuals work. Describes the three approaches currently in use to reduce gender discrimination (training women in ‘masculine’ attributes, adding alternative career tracks, teaching employees to value ‘feminine’ working styles) as treating the symptoms of inequity. Suggests that it may be necessary to change the organization rather than the people and describes a strategy to do so. This is based on identifying and discussing working practices and beliefs which lead to discrimination and strategically targeting a limited number of initiatives to find ways to make changes. Argues that linking changes in behaviour to changes in understanding becomes self reinforcing.

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SOCIAL WORKERS ON THE ROAD TO PROFESSIONALISM

Headlines, PublicNet: 31 August, 2000

Social work is an emerging discipline and a development path has been published for consultation. There are some 50,000 social workers employed mainly by local authorities and voluntary bodies, within a total of one million engaged in some form of personal social services. The Quality Strategy for Social Care is a blue print for development of a professional model for social work, but all employers do not support the proposals. There is a view that social workers are responsible for care management and the delivery of services and that they operate under pre determined procedures with little requirement to exercise judgement. This view partly explains why investment in training social workers is below the average for UK industry.The Strategy for Social Care includes plans for a new Social Care Institute for Excellence which will have real authority and which will set out clear guidelines on effective social care practice. It will also produce best practice guidelines to create a Lifelong Learning social care workforce culture. Views will be sought on how the Institute can be used to pioneer change and accelerate the drive for quality.

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AUDIT WATCHDOG STARTS CRIME RE-THINK

Headlines, PublicNet: 31 August, 2000

The National Audit Office has launched two studies which will provide a framework for a total re-think about crime and how the Government should respond to it. The timing of the launch and the reporting timescale show clearly that if Labour secures a second term, crime will share the top spot in the reform agenda with health. Assuming a Spring 2001 General Election, interim findings from the studies will be available in time to frame a manifesto commitment. The full reports, when published later in the year, are expected to provide more than adequate justification for re-thinking the objectives and roles of the police and prison services. There is also speculation that a new Home Secretary would be necessary to push though sweeping reforms, particularly in view of the power exerted by professional bodies.Responsibility for reviewing the work of police services is laid to the Audit Commission, but these reviews are being conducted by the National Audit Office, because it is the Home Office’s approach to crime that is under scrutiny and not the way policies are implemented.

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