• Michelle Munch Hansen
  • Julie Jochims Engelbrechtsen
4. term, Social Work, Master (Master Programme)
This master thesis is based around the question: Why are the non-western immigrant women, to a greater extent than women of danish origin, kept passive in ‘Jobcenter Næstved’ after the changes of subsidy regulations in 2016? As a science theoretical point of view, this master thesis takes a critical realistic approach, which emphasizes a focus on the domain of real. Here it is emphasized, that the use of theories are crucial in the attempt of gaining a greater insight, in the domain of real. The theory requires you to take a stance on already existing knowledge on the area, as an essential part of creating new knowledge. Therefore this master thesis is based on Michael Lipsky’s understanding of Street Level Bureaucracy and the street-level bureaucrats use of discretion.

The theoretical understanding of Street Level Bureaucracy is used to answer two underlying questions. The two questions are: “How can structural decisions at the management level, explain that more immigrant women are held passive, after the subsidy regulations, and how can this be explained in terms of Michael Lipsky?” and “How can the social workers use of discretion, explain that several nonwestern immigrant women are held passive after the subsidy regulations, and how can this be explained in terms of Michael Lipsky?” In order to answer these questions and the overall problem statement, this master thesis has employed a qualitative method consisting of a split-sample vignette study. This study was based on a case from a practice situation, with a ethnic danish woman and a nonwestern immigrant woman who both was out of work. After collecting the answers from the vignette study, we held four qualitative interviews in ‘Jobcenter Næstved’, with two social workers and two leaders.

The master thesis includes an analysis which will be divided into two parts. The first section focusing on the leaders’ statements about the structural decisions made in ‘Jobcenter Næstved’. The second part of the analysis, will draw on the social workers’ use of discretion, based upon the vignette study and the qualitative interviews with the two social workers i ‘Jobcenter Næstved’.

The master thesis can overall conclude that the social workers’ use of discretion might have an effect on why the non-western immigrant women are kept passive, as the subsidy regulations have led to an increased pressure on social workers, including an increased focus on getting the citizens into ordinary employment as soon as possible. This has led to a ‘parking’ of the non-western immigrant women and a ‘creaming’ of the ethnic danish women.
LanguageDanish
Publication date3 Jun 2019
Number of pages115
ID: 305027377