This original analysis of the creation of new state forms critically examines the political forces that enabled `more and better management' to be presented as a solution to the problems of the welfare state in Britain. Examining the micro-politics within public service, the authors draw links between politics, policies and organizational power to present an incisive and dynamic account of the restructuring of social welfare. Clarke and Newman expose the tensions and contradictions in the managerial state and trace the emergence of new dilemmas in the provision of public services. They show that these problems are connected to the recurring difficulties in defining `the public' that receives these services. In partic
Chapter 6: Capturing the Customer: The Politics of Representation
Capturing the Customer: The Politics of Representation
In Chapter 1, we pointed to the way in which the restructuring of the welfare state was undertaken in the name of the consumers of services, while in Chapter 4 we considered the claims of different organisational regimes to be able to represent the best interests of the users of services. Here we examine the ways in which service users are caught up in the organisational politics of the emerging managerial regimes, as the subjects of competing attempts to speak for and ‘capture’ them as a focus of organisational power and legitimacy.
The Rise of the Customer
In a world in which cable television systems have fifty channels, banks let their customers do business ...