No. 15




Social Welfare System – Only Half a Solution to the Problems

14 June 2007


RiTo No. 15, 2007

  • Andres Siplane

    Andres Siplane

    Chief Specialist, Department of Sanctions and Strategic Export Control, Ministry of Foreign

The purpose of the article is to analyze the social welfare system in the light of general system theory.

One of the important traits of any system is that, as the elements are integrated into the system, there will appear some new characteristics that we do not find when we observe the elements one by one. The same applies when we observe social workers separately and when we observe the systems that they form.

When social workers are integrated into a system they exchange some of their personal traits for those of the system. Some of the new traits would be the wish to maintain jobs and the organization, financial and legislative constraints, instability that comes from the employee turnover, alienation from the results of the work and also path-dependency when designing appropriate services.

The article will not offer some magic solutions to those problems because they are present in all kind of bureaucracies. But we should be aware of those inclinations and consider them when designing social policy.

Full article in Estonian