Arts Design & Architecture

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Now showing 1 - 10 of 41

  • (2019) Lutz, Deborah Luise
    Many countries have introduced personal budgets for people with intellectual disabilities. A personal budget is a sum of money that allows people with intellectual disabilities to purchase their own support work. Support workers are people who assist budget holders to organise and do activities, such as household tasks and social activities in the community. This thesis uses care, Ethics of Care and disability studies literature to conceptualise support work relationships – the relationship between budget holders with intellectual disabilities and their support workers. It investigates two research questions: (1) How do people with intellectual disabilities in receipt of a personal budget and their support workers experience their relationships with each other? (2) How are the lived experiences of people with intellectual disabilities and their support workers in their relationship with each other influenced by personal budget policies organising support work? Through the methodology of Institutional Ethnography, the researcher explores both questions in Germany and Australia. This methodology states that people’s everyday experiences are influenced by the ‘ruling relations’, which are policy processes and people’s practices that organise social settings. During one year of ethnographic field research in Germany and Australia, the researcher conducted participant observation and interviews with five people with intellectual disabilities and their support workers from each country. Additionally, the researcher conducted interviews with ten service professionals in each country and analysed disability policy documents from each country. By using the analytical framework of Institutional Ethnography, the study found that the constituents of the ruling relations included people’s views and expectations about the support work relationship, the support work context and the policies of personal budgets. The policies of personal budgets were only one constituent of the ruling relations that operated within a wider social policy context. The interconnection between the three constituents influenced the ways in which the two people engaged in the emotional form of support work (the social interaction) and the practical form of support work (the support work activities) which affected their relationship. The study argues that disability research, policy and practice needs to be cognisant of all three constituents to improve the quality of support work relationships.

  • (2018) Van Toorn, Georgia
    Disability support systems have undergone significant changes in contexts of rapid neoliberalisation. Services that were once provided or commissioned by the state are now increasingly delivered on an individual basis, through cash budgets and other forms of ‘individualised funding’ (IF). These changes have been driven by both state and non-state advocates of a greater role for markets in the provisioning of welfare, as well as significant sections of the disability rights movement. While these are widely recognised as part of a global process of market-oriented state restructuring, a lacuna exists in the critical literature in regard to the international diffusion of IF models. This study addresses this gap though a cross-national investigation of IF as an object of neoliberal policy mobility. The study traces the movement and mutation of IF in and between England, Scotland and Australia, and explains how and why it has proliferated in the ways that it has. I highlight IF’s inherent spatial, relational and political character, and the ways it has moved and mutated between countries, deploying a policy mobilities approach as a theoretical point of departure. These themes are explored empirically through a methodology of following the policy through global networks and identifying the key players involved in its dissemination. To follow the policy, I developed a multi-site extended case study design, comprising three key sites of policy adaptation: England, Scotland and Australia. Through analysis of documentary materials and 30 semi-structured interviews with civil society actors, disability movement actors and policy makers, the thesis maps the spread of IF models through transnational networks. It highlights the ways in which networks actors themselves are embedded within, and conditioned by, global and national webs of norms, ideologies and structural constraints. The thesis finds that the variety of actors involved in the transnational diffusion of market-based models is much wider than is often acknowledged. In addition to state and commercial actors, social movements and transnational advocacy networks also play an important role in shaping and at times facilitating neoliberal policy mobility, even where this is not necessarily their intention. Such diffusion is always mediated by the national institutional contexts, political economies and path dependencies encountered, which modify the form, if not the substance, of IF regimes targeted at the disability sector.

  • (2016) Sewell, Alec
    Social service, criminal justice and healthcare systems are poorly placed to respond effectively to people facing multiple co-occurring needs. This group falls simultaneously within and outside of the remit of a number of responding agencies, generating complexities at the intersection of agency jurisdictions. As such, responses to complex social needs can themselves heighten complexity. To date, conceptualisations of complex needs have drawn heavily on policy and scholarly discussions of distinct social issues that tend to co-occur with other areas of need, such as homelessness, mental illness or criminal offending. Complex needs has largely been conceptualised as a peripheral problem on the margins of other policy agendas, with a comparatively meagre literature investigating complex needs as a policy problem in itself. This thesis takes the phenomenon of complex needs itself as the topic of central inquiry and considers its co-creation through interactions between multiply disadvantaged individuals and frontline workers. Ten case studies are presented, compiled from a multidimensional linked administrative dataset, in order to explore and interrogate the complexities that arise as multiply disadvantaged individuals interact with a range of frontline agencies. The cases present a compilation of administrative records for the individuals, with data drawn from a number of agencies in a single Australian jurisdiction including police, hospitals, courts and prisons. A series of bounded vignettes drawn from these case studies are discussed, highlighting the patterns of action and interaction between individuals and institutions. Applying a complex realist theoretical and conceptual framework, analysis focuses on the emergent consequences of small-scale interactions between multiply disadvantaged individuals and frontline workers enacting agency policy. A relational conceptualisation of complex needs is developed, highlighting the ways in which needs and behaviours are identified as problems requiring a response, the moderating impact of small-scale factors at the moment of presentation, and the consequences of differential priorities placed on different types of need. This approach offers novel scholarly insights regarding the consequences of policy interventions. 

  • (2017) Chan, Sherman
    Financial exclusion is a lack of opportunity to access financial services. Concerns about financial exclusion are two-fold. On a social front, it contributes to the broader issue of social exclusion. From an economic view, exclusion from credit inhibits consumption smoothing and potentially contributes to widening inequality. Financial exclusion is commonly indicated by limited availability of financial outlets, low ownership of financial products and infrequent use of financial services. Instead of studying the incidence of non-participation, this thesis more closely captures the essence of financial exclusion by focusing on the ability to access financial services, and hence the capacity to deal with unforeseen financial needs. Using the General Social Survey 2010 and the Community Understanding of Poverty and Social Exclusion survey, this thesis uses the following as indicators of financial exclusion: product application rejections, reported difficulties in accessing financial institutions, and whether assistance is required for banking activities. A set of dimensions for financial exclusion in Australia is derived, capturing self-exclusion, geographical issues, ethnicity, disability and cost. Different combinations of personal attributes are identified as risk factors for different dimensions, supporting the view that financial exclusion is a multi-dimensional issue. The serviceability calculations used by Australian banks are replicated in this thesis to assess people’s capacity to repay loans and hence their eligibility for bank credit. Findings show that 15.7% of the population would be systematically credit excluded. The main contributor to serviceability-based credit exclusion is found to be insufficient surplus income after basic living expenses and housing costs. Sensitivity analysis shows that relaxation of key product conditions would only narrowly reduce the ineligibility rate. Finally, this thesis investigates the correlation between financial exclusion and financial stress, and between indebtedness and financial stress. Credit-related exclusion indicators are correlated with cash flow problems, healthcare delays, foregone education/training, and inability to raise emergency finance. Debtors with poor serviceability are also likely to experience cash flow problems, which raises questions about “over-inclusion”. Overall, the results suggest that a balance is required between satisfying consumer demand and prudent credit provision.

  • (2015) Adamson, Elizabeth
    This study examines the place of in-home child care, commonly referred to as care by nannies, in Australia, the United Kingdom and Canada since the 1970s. In contrast to childminding or family day care provided in the home of the carer, in-home care takes place in the child’s home. Once considered the preserve of the wealthy, demand for in-home child care has increased in response to changes in the labour market and governments have, to varying degrees, incorporated it into wider policy settings. Governments increasingly justify expenditure on early childhood education and care (ECEC) by reference to the dual objectives of enhancing early childhood development and supporting parental employment. This liberal approach to social investment has been characterised by the introduction of market mechanisms in the delivery of ECEC, and other social care services. In-home care sits somewhat uneasily in the child development frame since providers typically are not required to meet the same standards as mainstream ECEC providers. Informed by theories of institutionalism and welfare regimes literature, the thesis uses the concept of ‘care culture’ to examine how in-home child care has been repositioned within ECEC and broader welfare state policies. It traces the emergence of in-home child care and compares how it is supported by government policy through funding and regulation. The research extends beyond the ECEC domain to consider how migration policy facilitates the provision of child care in the private home. Using a mix of qualitative research methods, including analysis of policy details in each country, government and sector documents and 60 interviews with key policy stakeholders across three countries, it shows how three liberal countries with common policy structures and discourses, in practice, developed different approaches to in-home child care. It illustrates the implications of these policies for families and care workers. It proposes that these differences are shaped by both structural and normative understandings about appropriate forms of care that cut across gender, class/socioeconomic status and race/migration. Overall, it argues that greater attention needs to be given to the way child care work in the private home is situated across ECEC and migration policy.

  • (2017) Naidoo, Yuvisthi
    This thesis is about the measurement of the standard of living and well-being at an individual level. It contributes to a growing literature challenging the dominant economic paradigm that relies on disposable income and GDP as proxy individual and national standard of living indicators. Two lines of conceptual and empirical inquiry are explored. The first develops a more comprehensive measure of economic resources in line with the economic theory of consumption. The second develops a multi-dimensional well-being indicator framework based on sociological references to individual well-being. Both approaches are applied using data from Wave 10 (2010) of the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) survey to assess and compare the standard of living and well-being of older Australians, aged 65 years and over. The economic standard of living approach is operationalised by combining fuller income and wealth economic resource components into a set of money-based metrics that determine individual potential consumption possibilities. The findings indicate that augmenting disposable income with income streams from non-cash services and annuitised wealth (particularly home wealth) substantially improves the absolute and relative economic position of older Australians. A multi-dimensional well-being indicator framework which emphasises the inter-relationship between economic and non-economic (sociological) dimensions is then constructed at an individual level. The findings indicate that, while older Australians have slightly lower overall well-being compared to non-older adults, driven primarily by declining physical health and to a lesser extent mental health, they maintain strong personal relationships, engage actively as community members and within their neighbourhood environment. There are two distinct categories of older Australians who simultaneously experience economic resource and multi-dimensional well-being advantage and corresponding disadvantage. Specifically, non-pensioners or tertiary educated older people experience an advantage; while renters, non-English speaking born or separated/divorced older people experience a corresponding disadvantage. Comparison of the two approaches shows that, for many older Australians, their measured economic resource position is only weakly associated with objective multi-dimensional well-being assessments.

  • (2017) Idle, Jan
    Community is defined in a multitude of ways across disciplines. Places and spaces of community are geographically local and global and can be formed in networked relationships with others across difference and produced in mutual obligation and reciprocity. They may be encountered through shared values, knowledge and history. This thesis investigates the experiences and views of ten young people aged between ten and twelve years, discussing community through their encounters and stories of relationships, time, place and space. It examines how these challenge and reflect contemporary knowledge of community. The study draws on interdisciplinary perceptions of community, including ideas discussed in the fields of philosophy, sociology, children’s geography, childhood, urban studies, and cultural studies. Issues of voice, reciprocity, and respect were central in my research as I aimed to conduct research with and not on, children and young people. These issues were explored through qualitative research methods of sustained participant observation, pedagogical research with analysis, and included art activities, discussions and interviews. Sustained time-rich fieldwork facilitated opportunities for attention and careful listening to young people’s stories and perspectives. The methodological approach was influenced by child-led and child focused practices, and incorporated a reflexive approach that recognised young people’s competency and vulnerability. The research participants expressed the multivalent nature of community through their everyday experiences of relationships with others and with place. Their views contribute to and challenge perceptions of community as implicitly good and produced through encounters of ease, to one that embraces the difficult, ambivalent or uninterested. In everyday interactions the young people described their communities through experiences of care, kindness, fear and disappointment. They articulated responsibility to and for each other, and were concerned with their own well-being and that of strangers, adults and other children. As children they recognised they were vulnerable and had less power than adults, who in their view should demonstrate more responsibility. Knowledge from this study contributes to developing respectful methods for conducting research with children and young people. The young people’s views resonate with and add to interdisciplinary understandings that community is complex, fluid and diverse.

  • (2016) Cronin, Darryl
    My thesis examines whether dialogue is useful for negotiating Indigenous rights and solving intercultural conflict over Indigenous claims for recognition within Australia. As a social and political practice, dialogue has been put forward as a method for identifying and solving difficult problems and for promoting processes of understanding and accommodation. Dialogue in a genuine form has never been attempted with Indigenous people in Australia. Australian constitutionalism is unable to resolve Indigenous claims for recognition because there is no practice of dialogue in Indigenous policy. A key barrier in that regard is the underlying colonial assumptions about Indigenous people and their cultures which have accumulated in various ways over the course of history. I examine where these assumptions about Indigenous people originate and demonstrate how they have become barriers to dialogue between Indigenous people and governments. I investigate historical and contemporary episodes where Indigenous people have challenged those assumptions through their claims for recognition. Indigenous people have attempted to engage in dialogue with governments over their claims for recognition but these attempts have largely been rejected on the basis of those assumptions. There is potential for dialogue in Australia however genuine dialogue between Indigenous people and the Australian state is impossible under a colonial relationship. A genuine dialogue must first repudiate colonial and contemporary assumptions and attitudes about Indigenous people. It must also deconstruct the existing colonial relationship between Indigenous people and government.