Professions, Governance and Citizenship through the Global Looking Glass

Tuesday, 12 July 2016: 17:45
Location: Hörsaal BIG 1 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Ellen KUHLMANN, Goethe-University Frankfurt, Germany
The state-professions relationship and the role of professionalism as facilitator of public sector services are key issues of the professions studies. Currently, these relationships face a number of fundamental transformations (1) state regulation expands towards ‘governance’ with plural actors and market logics; (2) globalization and new economies add new forms of ‘state’ and ‘citizenship’; and (3) austerity politics curb prospering markets and public funding for professional services. This paper maps the (re-)making of the bonds between professions, governance and citizens in international perspective using thematic analysis of published case study material gathered in Arab countries, Argentine, India, Italy, Portugal, Russia, South Africa and Turkey. In the Arab countries, universal approaches to professionalism are used strategically to build a professional field and expertise, while mature mechanisms of public control and state support are lacking. Russian and Turkey show strong centralized, hierarchical state interventions to constrain professional self-governance coupled with increasing involvement of professionals in management that may target professions-users relationships. In Argentine, India, South Africa globalisation and a self-governing professional model may promote the building of new professional fields, but create different opportunities towards inclusive professionalism and equality. Italy and Portugal respond with a mix of inclusive strategies (involving professionals in organising/managing public services), market-based incentives and interventionist states to control the behaviour of professionals. In summary, the findings reveal an increasing relevance of professionals in governance arrangements, while the local type of governance and the mechanisms of public control shape professional development and emergent forms of professionalism. Studying professions in global comparative perspective contributes to better understanding transformations in public sector policy and services.

This paper is supported by collaboration and material gathered by: Agartan, Bonnin, Correia, Hermo, Iarskaia-Smirnova, Lengauer, Pavolini, Ruggunan and Singh