Listening like a state. An ethnographic contribution to the study of the self-critical state
Gélédan, Fabien (2011-09), Listening like a state. An ethnographic contribution to the study of the self-critical state, 6th Annual Joint University of Liverpool Management School and Keele University Institute for Public Policy and Management Symposium on Current Developments in Ethnographic Research in the Social and Management Sciences, 2011-09, Cardiff, Royaume-Uni
TypeCommunication / Conférence
Conference title6th Annual Joint University of Liverpool Management School and Keele University Institute for Public Policy and Management Symposium on Current Developments in Ethnographic Research in the Social and Management Sciences
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Abstract (EN)In this paper, I offer an ethnographic approach of the involvement of public services user in the shaping of public management reform. Drawing on a two years fieldwork in a French organization dedicated to the definition of administrative simplification reforms, I argue that this emerging set of technologies is a refinement of the neo-liberal “art of government” defined by Michel Foucault and can be inscribed in what I propose to call a “self-critical state”. The contribution of this account is twofold. From a conceptual point of view, I highlight how the user’s voice is listened to and appropriated by the administration. This operation leads to the definition of reforms aiming to eliminate the concrete manifestation of the state in everyday life without weakening the control activities. From a methodological point of view, I stress the specific issues raised by the using of “at-home ethnography” and tries to offer solutions to find the good distance from the field.
Subjects / KeywordsEthnography; Public management reform; Foucault; At-home ethnography; User; Citizen
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