Construction of Reflexivity in Social Workers Working with Vulnerable Children in the Czech Republic
University of Ostrava
Social work in the Czech Republic is confronted with the impact of global neoliberalism, which is manifested by privatisation of social services, individualisation of social risks and economisation. Reflexivity of social workers working with vulnerable children and their families has the potential to lead to a higher quality of social work, strengthening of social workers' identity, and empowering social workers to promote changes in everyday practice. Meeting this potential requires an understanding of constructing reflexivity by social workers, which is the objective of this paper. We used a qualitative research strategy, particularly group and individual interviews with social workers and their analysis using current approaches to grounded theory. Concerning data analysis, we found out that constructing reflexivity (nature and subject of reflexion) derives from the perceived roles of social workers (social worker as an ununderstood artist, social worker a as mediator between social and individual, social workers as an agent of a (society) change, social workers as an agent of normalisation and reflexive professional). The acquired data, within the situational analysis, was inserted into a position map on the scale of holistic and technical reflection. The conclusion discusses the implication for practice and education in social work.