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The inevitability of management?: Resistance against neoliberal and managerial techniques of governing in Swedish civil society
2017 (English)Conference paper, Presentation (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

During the recent decades new forms of governing, highly influenced by market logics, have emerged in the public administration of liberal democratic states. Often, these governing forms are gathered together under the umbrella term of “new public management” which is used to label management forms that emphasize privatization and marketization of public services. However, taking a power critical stance, these forms of governing can also be understood as an expression of a neoliberal rationality, structuring society, populations and subjects “according to a specific image of the economic” (Brown, 2015: 10). This form of rationality is not limited to public administration, but has also had spill-over effects on civil society. Research has shown that the effects of techniques related to the neoliberal rationality have created a civil society becoming more “business-like”, creating certain power and knowledge structures as well as neoliberal subjectivities (Maier et al., 2014). Furthermore, the neoliberal rationality has transformed civil society into “management bureaucracies” (Hall, 2012), meaning that civil society is subject to governing through managerial techniques such as auditing and performance measurement. From the perspective of radical democracy (e.g. Mouffe, 2008; Brown, 2015), this is problematic since the civil society’s role as a politicizing actor, that actively critiques power structures, becomes undermined by a neoliberal discourse, placing co-workers in civil society organizations into the subject position of “management bureaucrats”. Possibly, this could create resistance and conflict in civil society. This paper aims to present a theoretical and methodological framework for studying resistance in Swedish civil society organizations, specifically NGOs implicated in Swedish international development cooperation, against neoliberal and managerial techniques of governing, thus challenging the stipulated “truth” that the introduction of management techniques is inevitable.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-58592OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-58592DiVA: diva2:1123240
Conference
Nordic Geographers Meeting
Available from: 2017-07-12 Created: 2017-07-12 Last updated: 2017-07-12

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf