PhD+Thesis+Final.pdf - SOCIAL WORK PURPOSE MOTIVATION AND IDENTITY FILIPINO SOCIAL WORKERS AT HOME AND ABROAD Jeremy Price A thesis submitted in partial

PhD+Thesis+Final.pdf - SOCIAL WORK PURPOSE MOTIVATION AND...

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Unformatted text preview: SOCIAL WORK PURPOSE, MOTIVATION AND IDENTITY: FILIPINO SOCIAL WORKERS AT HOME AND ABROAD Jeremy Price A thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements of the University of Brighton for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy June 2014 The University of Brighton Abstract This thesis is concerned with social work purpose and identity in international contexts. It explores the perspectives of social workers, social work academics and policy makers in the Philippines and of Filipino social workers who moved to England to undertake the ‘same’ job. The study took a critical realist approach, starting from participants’ own accounts but alert equally to professional ideologies, institutional structures and social divisions. Primary data were gathered in a 5-week study visit to the Philippines (during which ‘indigenous’ literature was gathered, study visits made and semi-structured interviews undertaken with 24 participants in the Philippines: 11 social workers; 1 social worker in training; 7 social work academics; 5 policy makers) and also via semi-structured interviews with 9 Filipino social workers in England. The analysis was thematic, employing a combination of inductive and deductive coding, the development of comparative categories and second-level coding. The primary focus of the research is upon what it is to be a social worker and to do social work in the Philippines and to be a Filipino social worker in England. Insights gained from Filipinos practising in the Philippines inform a discussion of the cross-cultural transferability of practice to England. The thesis uses a Bourdieusian conceptual framework to consider the roles of structure and agency in the construction of social work identities. In reflecting upon what they do and why, social workers and social work academics shed light on their personal-professional identity and motivation and upon the field of social work ‘locally’ and internationally. The originality of the thesis is derived from several aspects of the study. Firstly, there is almost no published work in which the perspectives of those directly involved in Philippine social work are described and analysed. Indeed, the country rarely features in the international social work literature. The focus on professional transition also constitutes an original contribution, with no literature currently considering the specific case of transition from the Philippines to England. Finally, the application of Bourdieusian theory to social work has been explored in few articles and not in relation to the Philippines or to economic migration and identity within social work. The key arguments centre upon the helpfulness of the concepts of field and habitus in informing a reflective practice that takes account of both agency and structure and the importance of considering the layered nature of professional fields and impact upon professional identity and purpose. The findings will be of particular interest to those involved in the study of work and professions, in ‘professional migration’ (as employer, migrant or researcher) and in the growing academic field of international social work. 2 Contents Chapter 1: Introducing the Scope and Purpose of this Thesis ................................. 13 1.1 Introduction ..................................................................................................... 13 1.2 Background and Motivation ............................................................................ 15 1.3 Terminology .................................................................................................... 16 1.4 Why the Philippines & England? ..................................................................... 22 1.5 The Philippines: A Demographic Outline ........................................................ 24 1.6 Original Contributions, Potential Audiences and Concluding Comments ........ 26 Chapter 2: Towards a Conceptual Framework ......................................................... 28 2.1 Introduction ..................................................................................................... 28 2.2 Approaching the Research ............................................................................. 29 2.3 The Professional Journey ............................................................................... 31 2.4 Core Themes of the Thesis ............................................................................ 36 2.5 Field and Habitus: A Typology of Practice ...................................................... 38 2.6 Social Work and Social Development ............................................................. 44 2.7 Some Messages from the Sociology of Work ................................................. 47 2.7.1 Professions .............................................................................................. 47 2.7.2 Sociology and Work ................................................................................. 48 2.8 Bourdieu and this thesis ................................................................................. 51 2.9 Social Work: Motivation & Identity .................................................................. 66 2.10 Social Work Motivation and Identity: The Place of Spirituality and Religion . 72 2.11 Conceptual Framework: Concluding Comments........................................... 78 Chapter 3: Philippine Social Work in Historical and International Context ................ 80 3.1 Introduction ..................................................................................................... 80 3.2 The Growth of Social Work: Competing Orientations ..................................... 80 3.3 International Development of Social Work ...................................................... 87 3.3.1 Social Work & Globalisation ..................................................................... 87 3 3.3.2 Defining International Social Work ........................................................... 90 3.3.3 This Thesis as International ..................................................................... 96 3.4 Indigenisation and Reconceptualisation ....................................................... 101 3.5 Characteristics of the Profession in the Philippines ...................................... 105 3.6 Development of Social Welfare & Social Work in the Philippines ................. 109 3.7 Practice: Some defining features of Social Work in the Philippines Today ... 119 3.8 Philippine Social Work in Historical and International Context: Concluding Comments .......................................................................................................... 123 Chapter 4: Research Methodology & Process ....................................................... 125 4.1 Introductory Comment .................................................................................. 125 4.2 Research Questions and Objectives ............................................................. 125 4.3 Reflexivity ..................................................................................................... 127 4.4 International Research Methodology ............................................................ 131 4.5 Methodology ................................................................................................. 133 4.6 Reviewing the Literature ............................................................................... 138 4.7 Primary Research Process ........................................................................... 139 4.8 Research in the Philippines .......................................................................... 140 4.8.1 Purpose & Methodological Approach (Philippines) ................................ 140 4.8.2 Interviews in the Philippines ................................................................... 141 4.8.3 Eligibility for Participants (Philippines) .................................................... 143 4.8.4 Further Considerations: Research in the Philippines ............................. 144 4.8.5 Developing a Research Approach in the Philippines .............................. 145 4.8.6 Hong Kong Conference .......................................................................... 146 4.9 Research in England .................................................................................... 148 4.9.1 Participants & Recruitment (England) .................................................... 148 4.9.2 Other Comments on Process: England & the Philippines ...................... 149 4.10 Language and Meaning .............................................................................. 150 4 4.11 Ethical Dimensions & Considerations ......................................................... 152 4.11.1 Vulnerability & Harm ............................................................................ 152 4.11.2 Risk to Researcher ............................................................................... 154 4.11.3 Transparency & Consent...................................................................... 154 4.11.4 Confidentiality, Anonymity & Privacy .................................................... 155 4.11.5 Limits to Confidentiality ........................................................................ 156 4.11.6 Additional Ethical Considerations ......................................................... 157 4.12 Data Analysis .............................................................................................. 158 4.13 Research Methodology & Process: Concluding Comments ....................... 161 Chapter 5: Fieldwork Findings in the Philippines: The Field of Social Work in Historical, Cultural and International Context ......................................................... 164 5.1 Introduction ................................................................................................... 164 5.2 Historical Development of Social Work in the Philippines ............................. 165 5.2.1 The US and Spanish Legacies ............................................................... 165 5.2.2 International Influence and Faith ............................................................ 167 5.2.3 Did Charity Begin at Home? ................................................................... 170 5.2.4 Historical Processes and Language ....................................................... 172 5.3 International Aid and the Role of NGOs ........................................................ 173 5.4 Indigenisation or Reconceptualisation .......................................................... 175 5.5 The Social Work Profession in the Philippines.............................................. 181 5.6 Faith and Professional Identity...................................................................... 184 5.7 Characterising the Filipino People ................................................................ 186 5.7.1 Perceived Traits & Heterogeneity........................................................... 186 5.7.2 Being Caring .......................................................................................... 187 5.7.3 Anti-Oppressive Practice? ...................................................................... 189 5.7.4 How Filipinos Communicate ................................................................... 191 5.7.5 Family .................................................................................................... 192 5 5.7.6 Optimism, Resilience & Religion ............................................................ 194 5.7.7 Utang na loob ......................................................................................... 195 5.7.8 Faith & Fatalism ..................................................................................... 196 5.7.9 Saving Face ........................................................................................... 197 5.8 An Outsider’s Perspective ............................................................................ 198 5.9 Community & Collectivity .............................................................................. 199 5.10 The Field of Social Work in the Philippines: Concluding Comments........... 200 Chapter 6: Fieldwork Findings in the Philippines: Social Work Motivation, Purpose and Identity............................................................................................................. 203 6.1 Introduction ................................................................................................... 203 6.2 Professional Identity, Status and Public Perception ...................................... 203 6.2.1 Public Perception ................................................................................... 204 6.2.2 On Belonging to a Profession................................................................. 210 6.3 Purpose and Orientation of Practice ............................................................. 211 Angel (FSW UK 40-49 F) ................................................................................ 212 6.3.1 To Dole-Out or Not to Dole-Out?............................................................ 212 6.3.2 Orientation and Approach to Practice .................................................... 215 6.3.2.1 Power & Politics .................................................................................. 215 6.3.2.2 Empowerment as Individualised or Collective? ................................... 217 6.3.2.3 Empowerment as Maintenance or Social Functioning ........................ 219 6.3.2.4 Promoting Dignity ................................................................................ 220 6.3.2.5 On Being Critical ................................................................................. 220 6.3.3 Dilemmas in Practice ............................................................................. 221 6.4 Individual Motivation for Social Work ............................................................ 225 6.4.1 Entering the Profession ‘by Accident’ ..................................................... 225 6.4.2 Economy ................................................................................................ 226 6.4.3 Family & Community .............................................................................. 227 6 6.4.4 Religion and Faith .................................................................................. 230 6.5 Social Work Motivation, Purpose and Identity in the Philippines: Concluding Comments .......................................................................................................... 233 Chapter 7: Fieldwork Findings: Filipino Social Workers’ Perceptions of Society & Social Work in England .......................................................................................... 235 7.1 Introduction ................................................................................................... 235 7.2 Views from Outside ....................................................................................... 236 7.3 Reasons for Going Overseas ....................................................................... 237 7.3.1 Economic Migration ................................................................................ 237 7.3.2 Status and Professional Development ................................................... 240 7.4 Adjusting to England ..................................................................................... 241 7.4.1 Initial Impressions .................................................................................. 242 7.4.2 Poverty ................................................................................................... 242 7.4.3 Feeling Deskilled .................................................................................... 243 7.4.4 Language ............................................................................................... 244 7.4.5 Orientation.............................................................................................. 245 7.4.6 An Individualised Society ....................................................................... 247 7.4.7 Facing Discrimination ............................................................................. 248 7.5 The Importance of Support ........................................................................... 249 7.6 Community and Orientation to Practice ........................................................ 253 7.7 Public Perception of and Attitude to Social Work in England ........................ 256 7.7.1 Relationship with Service Users ............................................................. 256 7.7.2 Poverty and Practice .............................................................................. 258 7.7.3 Acculturation .......................................................................................... 259 7.8 Managerialism and Bureaucracy in England ................................................ 259 7.9 Professional Discretion: Doing Social Work in Less Flexible Ways .............. 261 7.10 Use of Self in New Contexts ....................................................................... 263 7.11 Doing Social Work in England: Stress ........................................................ 264 7 7.12 Positive Aspects of Work in England .......................................................... 266 7.13 Filipino Social Workers’ Perceptions of Society & Social Work in England: Concluding Comments ....................................................................................... 268 Chapter 8: Further Discussion & Conclusions ........................................................ 270 8.1 The Scope of the Thesis ............................................................................... 270 8.2 The Research Process, Core Contributions and Future Work ...................... 280 8.2.1 Core Contributions ................................................................................. 280 8.2.2 Reflections on the Research and Impact on and of Self ........................ 281 8.2.3 Thoughts on Future Developments ........................................................ 284 8.3 The International as Real .............................................................................. 285 References ............................................................................................................. 287 Appendix 1: Recruitment Flyer ............................................................................... 329 Appendix 2:Participant Information Sheet – Social Workers .................................. 330 Appendix 3: Information Sheet – Participants in the Philippines ............................ 333 Appendix 4: Informed Consent Form – Social Workers.......................................... 336 Appendix 6: Interview Schedules ........................................................................... 340 Appendix 7: Some Sources of Support .................................................................. 345 Appendix 8: Participant Details .............................................................................. 347 Appendix 9: First-Level Coding .............................................................................. 350 Appendix 10: Excerpt from Transcribed Interview ...... Error! Bookmark not defined. 8 List of Figures Page 1 Map of the Philippines 24 2 Development of Habitus 33 3 Core Themes of Thesis 37 4 Payne’s Typology of Social Work Orientations 39 5 Thompson’s PCS Model 42 6 Typology of Practice 43 9 List of Abbreviations 4Ps Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (conditional cash transfer scheme administered by DSWD in the Philippines) AOP Anti-Oppressive Practice AusAID Australian Agency for International Development BASW British Association of Social Workers CHED Commission on Higher Educatio...
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