Gamers or victims of the system? Welfare reform, cynical manipulation and vulnerability

FLETCHER, Del, BATTY, Elaine, FLINT, John F and MCNEILL, Jennifer (2016). Gamers or victims of the system? Welfare reform, cynical manipulation and vulnerability. Journal of Poverty and Social Justice, 24 (2), 171-185.

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New mechanisms of conditionality enacted through current reforms of the UK welfare system are framed within contested narratives about the characteristics, rationalities and conduct of welfare users. In the problem figuration of welfare reform the orientations and conduct of welfare recipients have been conceptualised and depicted across a spectrum ranging from cynical manipulators gaming the system and subverting the original ethos of the welfare state to vulnerable individuals experiencing compounded disadvantage. This paper aims to strengthen the conceptualisation of cynical manipulation and vulnerability and to empirically investigate how narratives of these ideas are deployed by key stakeholders in the welfare system and the extent to which manipulation or vulnerability are present in the orientations and conduct of individuals in receipt of welfare support.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research
Identification Number:
Page Range: 171-185
Depositing User: Sarah Ward
Date Deposited: 13 May 2016 08:43
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 06:53

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