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Ph.d.-forsvar — Anne Mette Møller defends her PhD thesis "Organizing knowledge and decision-making in street-level professional practice. A practice-based study of Danish child protective services".
Date & Time:
University of Copenhagen, Centre for Health and Society, Øster Farimagsgade 5, 1353 Copenhagen K., room 4.2.26.
Department of Political Science
Anne Mette Møller
“Organizing knowledge and decision-making in street-level professional practice. A practice-based study of Danish child protective services“. The thesis can be purchased as an e-book via Academic books.
Time and venue
Friday 29 June 2018 at 14.00 at the University of Copenhagen, Centre for Health and Society, Øster Farimagsgade 5, 1353 Copenhagen K., room 4.2.26. Kindly note that the defense will start precisely at 14.00.
Against the backdrop of the debates over evidence-based practice in social services, the thesis explores how is knowledge mobilized to inform decision-making and professional judgment in street-level organizations. Based on ethnographic fieldwork in three Danish municipal child protective agencies and qualitative interviews with political elite actors, and drawing on a wide range of theoretical perspectives, the thesis shows how, in the field of Danish child protective services, the evidence agenda has undergone a transformation, from a focus on the implementation of evidence-based programs to a broader focus on “knowledge-based practice”. The development represents a critique of “private-practicing professionalism”, which is conceptualized as an increasing demand for explicit professionalism, requiring professionals to explicate and document their actions as being, indeed, professional.
The thesis then shows how the mobilization of knowledge is integrated into everyday practice and how both propositional (know-that), procedural (know-how) and personal knowledge (knowledge by acquaintance) plays a central role in decision-making processes. The thesis introduces the concept deliberative organizational routines to describe how routines create both formal and informal venues for the collective exercise of professional judgement and, additionally, serve several idealized purposes, which can be related back to the ideal of explicit professionalism.
The thesis contributes with a nuanced theoretical conceptualization and detailed empirical mapping of knowledge mobilization as a professional and organizational practice, which must be understood in light of changing perceptions of legitimacy in the wider organizational field.