Conference paper

When Worlds Collide : Comparing the Logic of the Industrial and Welfare Societies


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Publication Details

Author list: Hasselblad, Annika

Publisher: Digital government society

Publication year: 2020

Start page: 317

End page: 326

Number of pages: 10



As governments around the world are increasingly using digital technology to generate social value, it is important to consider what types of logic underpin this value creation. Previous research has identified a dominant market logic, associated with new public management (NPM) in the public sector, which has had certain adverse effects. Against this backdrop, the purpose of this paper is to outline and compare the logic of two ideal societies: the industrial society and the welfare society. The study examines core works of literature on these two ‘ideal-type’ societies, each with its own logic. The results reveal important differences between these societies. While the welfare society neglects factors related to the mode of production and time, the industrial society lacks several important values, including human rights, solidarity, community and equality. By comparing these societies, this paper generates an understanding of why it is highly problematic for an industrial-based NPM logic to dominate in sectors such as education and health care. Such dominance is likely to lead to important values being overlooked.


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