Child welfare practice within the context of public-private partnerships

Journal article citation:
Social Work: A journal of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), 62(2), 2017, pp.130-138.
Oxford University Press

Frontline and managerial child welfare practice occurs within the context of a “partnership” among public agencies that have statutory mandate for child protection and related services and private agencies that provide an array of services to children and families through contractual or informal means. Empirical literature has begun to develop around key questions within this interorganisational system, including how public and private child welfare agency relationships and contracting procedures should be structured to promote effective service delivery; how performance measurement and management systems can be developed to promote child safety, permanency, and well-being; and how managers can help promote the delivery of effective and culturally appropriate services. Yet the impact of these organisational and institutional child welfare trends on practitioners has not been clarified. This article synthesises the literature on these questions to draw implications for practice for the frontline staff, both public and private, driving service delivery. (Edited publisher abstract)

Subject terms:
childrens services, joint working, public sector, private sector, service provision, contracts, performance management, multicultural approach;
Content type:
research review
United States
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