Digitalised Welfare: Systems For Both Seeing and Working With Mess

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Digital welfare does not operate in a vacuum, but rather transforms non-digital and unofficial spaces of welfare provision. The digitalisation of welfare occludes the complex reality of poverty and erects digital barriers to accessing welfare. Digitalised welfare has not abolished face-to-face support, but has relocated it to unofficial sites of welfare. The apparent efficiency and simplicity of the state's digital welfare apparatus, therefore, is produced not by reducing the ‘messiness’ of welfare, but by rendering it invisible within the digital framework. In this paper we compare two approaches to welfare digitalisation and identify three considerations for welfare service design that might reduce the digital barriers, re-build a sense of self-efficacy and increase service accessibility and inclusion.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWebSci '20 conference
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 6 Jul 2020

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