Information and Communications Technology (ICT) has the potential to improve services provided by the public and voluntary sectors, empower staff and strengthen the community. Therefore, it is in the interests of those working in social welfare to understand and grapple with key issues. This book analyses the current context and use of ICT in these sectors and builds on this to provide practical guidance for managers and staff.
Assuming no technical knowledge, the book provides the ideas, tools and resources to think critically and creatively about current ICT practice and to implement positive change at individual, team and organisational level.
"... a well written text which social care practitioners, indeed most local government officers, can use to help them recognise what ICT can and cannot do and how to harness it successfully to the development of modern public services." Socitm News
"The authors write lucidly about the social context for modern IT. And there are good sections about the digital divide and how information intermediaries can brisge gaps to reduce a sense of exclusion from awesome techie nirvanas." Community Care
"... a slim, well laid-out volume with lots of good content, which manages to raise a thought or two in the process." Local Government First
"Anyone who has previously found this subject difficult may rest assured that this book will clarify many issues and topics for them, in a relatively short time... strongly recommended to be read and to be kept in all working areas as a practical guidance and reference manual." RCN Information in Nursing Newsletter
"This accessible and informative book will boost the confidence of busy managers and staff grappling with ICT issues in a wide range of statutory and voluntary welfare organisations. With plenty of examples of ICT in use and checklist frameworks on important issues, this book will put managers back in control of the 'ICT juggernaut'." Terry Patterson, Local Government Association Social Security Advisers Group
Luke Geoghegan is Chief Executive of Toynbee Hall (a voluntary sector organisation in London's East End) and Visiting Professor at London Metropolitan University. Jason Lever is a Senior Policy Officer in the Children and Young People's Unit, Greater London Authority. Both have extensive experience in the statutory and voluntary sectors. Ian McGimpsey is the Linklaters Volunteer Manager at Toynbee Hall.
Introduction; ICT: people and society; ICT and social welfare practice; Putting the I and the C back into ICT; Modelling information flows and needs: improving service quality; Modelling information flows and needs: improving service quality; Modelling information flows and needs: improving organisational effectiveness; People, organisations and ICT; Information exclusion and the digital divide; Where next?: social welfare practice and e-government; Where next?: social welfare practice and emerging technology.