With the proposed development of the ‘youth professional’ and the consolidation of graduate professional qualifications, this is an important time for youth work. This book sets out the current state of debate about youth work for those considering, or about to embark on, a degree course. Contemporary debates in youth work are explored, and help to give students a sense of its history and its future contribution. By combining the experience of its editors and the contemporaneous experience of the voices of contributors, this book provides an excellent introduction to work as a youth worker in the twenty-first century.

Policy Analysis: A First and Vital Skill of Practice

Policy analysis: A first and vital skill of practice
Bernard Davies

Chapter Objectives

The objectives of this chapter are to:

  • clarify what is meant by ‘policy’ as the context for youth work practice, how ‘policy’ is made and by whom;
  • outline and analyse some of the contradictory ‘policy’ expectations and requirements that have been set for youth work in the past, and particularly by Labour governments since 1997;
  • consider how youth work might develop in the future within these policy expectations and requirements.

What do We Mean by ‘Policy’?

Youth work did not appear by accident, nor was it implemented or developed in a vacuum. Over 150 years ago, the women and men who decided a local boys’ or girls’ club was needed, ...

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