Journal Article

Personalisation through Individual Budgets: Does It Work and for Whom?

Ann Netten, Karen Jones, Martin Knapp, Jose Luis Fernandez, David Challis, Caroline Glendinning, Sally Jacobs, Jill Manthorpe, Nicola Moran, Martin Stevens and Mark Wilberforce

in The British Journal of Social Work

Published on behalf of British Association of Social Workers

Volume 42, issue 8, pages 1556-1573
Published in print December 2012 | ISSN: 0045-3102
Published online November 2011 | e-ISSN: 1468-263X | DOI:
Personalisation through Individual Budgets: Does It Work and for Whom?

Show Summary Details


In England, ‘personal budgets’ are being implemented at a time of financial austerity. They are part of a growing trend internationally to give users of publicly funded social care and support more choice and control. In the individual budgets' (IB) pilot, people were allocated and had control over the way their IB was managed and spent, offering the opportunity to explore the potential of IBs to deliver better outcomes for people than conventional services and support. We describe the way we measured outcomes, the effects we found and how they varied between and within service user groups. For some groups, there were clear benefits from IBs. However, it should not be a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach, and, in taking personal budgets forward, it is important to consider how best to address the particular challenges for older people, effects on social work practice and resource implications if the potential benefits are to be achieved. Social workers may find themselves implementing a policy with considerable potential, but which may prove very difficult to achieve in the current financial climate.

Keywords: Outcomes of social care; personal budgets; personalisation; social work role

Journal Article.  5589 words. 

Subjects: Social Work

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