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Creating transparency through electronic Information systems : opportunities and pitfalls

Jochen Devlieghere (UGent) , Lieve Bradt (UGent) and Rudi Roose (UGent)
(2018) BRITISH JOURNAL OF SOCIAL WORK. 48(3). p.734-750
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Abstract
Over the past few decades, governments all over Europe have drawn upon a diversity of Electronic Information Systems (EISs). One of the aims of these EISs is the creation of a transparent Child Welfare and Protection (CWP) system. In that context, Gillingham and Graham (2016) argue that the implementation of EISs in social work has made the daily work of practitioners visible in ways that social workers in the 1970s and 1980s would have find unimaginable. However, this has not gone unchallenged as research reveals that practitioners develop strategies which can also undermine the aim of transparency. This paper aims to capture the tension between this aim and the reality of social work practice in using EISs. We undertook semi-structured interviews with seventeen social practitioners and uncovered a complex struggle in which practitioners showed how EISs are capable of both increasing and hindering the creation of transparency. We therefore argue that the problem does not lie so much in the implementation or design of EISs, but in the idea that transparency can be increased by EISs.
Keywords
Electronic Information Systems, child welfare, transparency, qualitative methods

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Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

MLA
Devlieghere, Jochen, et al. “Creating Transparency through Electronic Information Systems : Opportunities and Pitfalls.” BRITISH JOURNAL OF SOCIAL WORK, vol. 48, no. 3, Oxford University Press (OUP), 2018, pp. 734–50.
APA
Devlieghere, J., Bradt, L., & Roose, R. (2018). Creating transparency through electronic Information systems : opportunities and pitfalls. BRITISH JOURNAL OF SOCIAL WORK, 48(3), 734–750.
Chicago author-date
Devlieghere, Jochen, Lieve Bradt, and Rudi Roose. 2018. “Creating Transparency through Electronic Information Systems : Opportunities and Pitfalls.” BRITISH JOURNAL OF SOCIAL WORK 48 (3): 734–50.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Devlieghere, Jochen, Lieve Bradt, and Rudi Roose. 2018. “Creating Transparency through Electronic Information Systems : Opportunities and Pitfalls.” BRITISH JOURNAL OF SOCIAL WORK 48 (3): 734–750.
Vancouver
1.
Devlieghere J, Bradt L, Roose R. Creating transparency through electronic Information systems : opportunities and pitfalls. BRITISH JOURNAL OF SOCIAL WORK. 2018;48(3):734–50.
IEEE
[1]
J. Devlieghere, L. Bradt, and R. Roose, “Creating transparency through electronic Information systems : opportunities and pitfalls,” BRITISH JOURNAL OF SOCIAL WORK, vol. 48, no. 3, pp. 734–750, 2018.
@article{8524111,
  abstract     = {Over the past few decades, governments all over Europe have drawn upon a diversity of Electronic Information Systems (EISs). One of the aims of these EISs is the creation of a transparent Child Welfare and Protection (CWP) system. In that context, Gillingham and Graham (2016) argue that the implementation of EISs in social work has made the daily work of practitioners visible in ways that social workers in the 1970s and 1980s would have find unimaginable. However, this has not gone unchallenged as research reveals that practitioners develop strategies which can also undermine the aim of transparency. This paper aims to capture the tension between this aim and the reality of social work practice in using EISs. We undertook semi-structured interviews with seventeen social practitioners and uncovered a complex struggle in which practitioners showed how EISs are capable of both increasing and hindering the creation of transparency. We therefore argue that the problem does not lie so much in the implementation or design of EISs, but in the idea that transparency can be increased by EISs.},
  author       = {Devlieghere, Jochen and Bradt, Lieve and Roose, Rudi},
  issn         = {0045-3102},
  journal      = {BRITISH JOURNAL OF SOCIAL WORK},
  keywords     = {Electronic Information Systems,child welfare,transparency,qualitative methods},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {734--750},
  publisher    = {Oxford University Press (OUP)},
  title        = {Creating transparency through electronic Information systems : opportunities and pitfalls},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcx052},
  volume       = {48},
  year         = {2018},
}

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