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Personalisation falls short.

Spicker, Paul


Paul Spicker


Personalisation offers individualised treatment in circumstances where markets do not operate. Personalisation is described variously as a process involving an individualised assessment and response, the expression of individual preferences and choices, or a process in which users and professionals negotiate a common understanding of the needs of the individual. The core arguments for individualised approaches are effectiveness, efficiency and responsiveness to need. However, personalisation sometimes falls short of the claims made for it. It is not always effective, because matching people to resources is time-consuming, difficult and dependent on so many conditions that mismatches are inevitable. It may be inefficient, because it is difficult to deliver selective services without either misplaced provision or inappropriate denial of service. There is only limited support to be found for the belief that services have become more responsive to individual circumstances as a consequence of personalisation, or that they are better matched to need. The case for personalisation has to be argued and proved in the context in which it is applied.


SPICKER, P. 2013. Personalisation falls short. British journal of social work [online], 43(7), pages 1259-1275. Available from:

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Mar 1, 2012
Online Publication Date May 9, 2012
Publication Date Oct 31, 2013
Deposit Date Aug 2, 2018
Publicly Available Date Aug 2, 2018
Journal British journal of social work
Print ISSN 0045-3102
Electronic ISSN 1468-263X
Publisher Oxford University Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 43
Issue 7
Pages 1259-1275
Keywords Personalisation; Individual budgets; Social care; Individualisation; Choice; Quasi markets
Public URL


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