Chapter

Narratives of public service delivery in the UK: comparing central and local government

Catherine Needham

in The consumer in public services

Published by Policy Press

Published in print April 2009 | ISBN: 9781847421814
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303725 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781847421814.003.0003
Narratives of public service delivery in the UK: comparing central and local government

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To disaggregate the ‘differentiated consumer’ of public services, it is important to consider how policy actors in central and local government talk about those who use key services: health, education, welfare, transport, and policing. This chapter gives an interpretative account of public services in the UK, exploring how different words and narratives are used in government texts, and the extent to which these vary between services and levels of government. Through measuring the frequency with which certain keywords appear, it is possible to assess the emphasis that policy makers place on certain identities – such as citizen, taxpayer, and customer – and to trace the importance of particular narratives – such as standardisation and differentiation.

Keywords: public services; health; education; welfare; transport; policing; UK; standardisation

Chapter.  7029 words. 

Subjects: Social Movements and Social Change

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