Navigating the market of welfare services: The choice of upper secondary school in Sweden

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title = "Navigating the market of welfare services: The choice of upper secondary school in Sweden",
abstract = "Due to increased market orientation and deregulation, welfare services in Sweden have taken on the form of market-based services. The body of research on deregulation and privatization is quite substantial regarding the implications of this kind of development. However, studies of the actual process of how choices are made are less common. This article discusses the implications of greater freedom of choice for Swedish citizens in diverse socioeconomic situations, focusing on factors that limit opportunities for choice. Deregulation and the increasing number of alternatives affect the relationship between the citizen and the welfare state in several ways. The Swedish school system is used here as an example of an empirical field. The analytical focus of the article consists of two different kinds of restrictions on choice: structure-based and agencybased. One conclusion is that both affluent and underprivileged citizens have limited choices. Another conclusion is that social citizenship, when freedom of choice is stimulated, can reproduce and even increase social and ethnic segregation. An additional potential consequence is that, when we consider social rights in their tangible form, the development of greater freedom of choice is focused increasingly on the consumer’s range of choices and less on the quality of the service offered.",
keywords = "deregulation, market orientation, welfare services, Sweden, market-based services, privatization, freedom of choice, citizen, limit opportunities, underprivileged citizens, citizenship, rights, social rights, reproduce, social segregation, ethnic segregation, consumer, quality, school system",
author = "Alexandru Panican and Torbj{\"o}rn Hjort",
year = "2014",
language = "English",
volume = "5",
pages = "55--79",
journal = "Nordic Journal of Social Research",
issn = "1892-2783",