International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy: call for Papers: “Street-Level Bureaucracy theory meets different Souths”

Si segnala una call for Papers per l’International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy (Emerald Publishing) : “Street-Level Bureaucracy theory meets different Souths” a cura di Daniela Leonardi, Rebecca Paraciani, Dario Raspanti

The Street-Level Bureaucracy (SLB) theoretical framework that has been introduced by Michael Lipsky (1980) focuses on the role of frontline workers in delivering public services. This strand of studies has had considerable recognition from the scientific community, especially in Northern Europe and in the United States of America. The adoption of SLB theory in Mediterranean countries, Eastern Europe, Asia, South America and Africa is still scarce. Adopting this theory in less studied contexts would advance the field and scientific knowledge on how the specific characteristics of different welfare systems, labour market, institutions, are important in understanding the implementation of services.

This Special Issue aims at gathering scholars that study public service delivery with the lens of the SLB theory in different Souths. We use the term “different Souths” to include those contexts that diverge from the most studied in terms of welfare state models, the role of the State, citizens’ trust in the public administration, degree of digitalization, and public administration functioning. The Special issue contribution to the SLB theory is twofold. First, we want to promote SLB theory adoption in countries with very different characteristics from those in which SLB theory was born and developed. A street-level perspective enables the analysis to highlight macro-consequences and tendencies of welfare states from the bottom-up, which do not automatically fit into classical categorisations (Esping-Andersen 1990). Secondly, our goal is to develop new analytical tools relevant for the whole discipline by setting the scene for SLB theory in the Mediterranean countries, Eastern Europe, Asia, South America, and Africa. This could contribute to the theoretical and empirical advancement of the field.

We welcome papers that adopt the SLB theory to study street-level organizations in different Souths by focusing on:

  • the role of the context in affecting street-level bureaucrats’ work practices and possibilities;
  • service delivery from a comparative perspective to problematize the use of SLB theory analytical categories and methodological challenges;
  • the characteristics assumed by the bureaucratic encounter in contexts where the distrust in public institutions is high, and clients often takes public service malfunction for granted;
  • how frontline workers contribute to realize public goals and programs and their role to fill regulatory gaps or resource scarcity.

Both theoretical and empirical contributions are welcomed.

Key deadlines

Opening date for manuscripts submissions: 01/08/2022

Closing date for manuscripts submission: 31/03/2023

Closing date for abstract submission: 30/11/2022

Email for submissions: ;

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