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Doing more for less? Developing sustainable systems of social care in the context of climate change and public spending cuts

Evans, Simon; Hills, Sarah; Orme, Judy

Authors

Simon Evans

Judy Orme Judy.Orme@uwe.ac.uk
Professor/Ins Director ISHE



Abstract

This article opens a debate on how to make social care in England more sustainable in the context of environmental, social and economic changes. Based on an innovative research project commissioned by the Department of Health through the Social Care Institute for Excellence, we provide an analysis of the policy context for sustainability in the social care sector as set out by New Labour and discuss the extent to which the new coalition government has taken this agenda forward. Drawing on case studies from England and Wales, the article describes a range of good practice for embedding sustainability within the commissioning and delivery of social care services. We then consider how to develop frameworks that support sustainable practices within social care services, and critically discuss some of drivers and challenges. We conclude that social care can only be sustainable if an integrated approach is taken that combines environmental, economic and social considerations. The current fiscal crisis has added urgency to the need to develop innovative systems of social care based on co-production, mutualism and localism. Piloting and mainstreaming approaches such as these can only be done with strong leadership, long-term thinking and meaningful incentives. © The Author 2011. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The British Association of Social Workers. All rights reserved.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jun 1, 2012
Journal British Journal of Social Work
Print ISSN 0045-3102
Electronic ISSN 1468-263X
Publisher Oxford University Press (OUP)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 42
Issue 4
Pages 744-764
APA6 Citation Evans, S., Hills, S., & Orme, J. (2012). Doing more for less? Developing sustainable systems of social care in the context of climate change and public spending cuts. British Journal of Social Work, 42(4), 744-764. https://doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcr108
DOI https://doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcr108
Keywords social care, climate change, sustainability, England and Wales, public services
Publisher URL http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcr108