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Title: “Getting the agencies together”: a qualitative study of the professionals’ perceptions of collaboration in prevention of juvenile criminality
Authors: Zhuchyna, Olena
Orientador: Andersson, Lena
Keywords: Interagency collaboration
Juvenile criminality
Crime prevention
Issue Date: Jun-2016
Citation: ZHUCHYNA, Olena - “Getting the agencies together”: a qualitative study of the professionals’ perceptions of collaboration in prevention of juvenile criminality [Em linha]. Suécia: University of Gothenburg, 2016. Dissertação de mestrado. [Consult. Dia Mês Ano] Disponível em www:<>.
Abstract: Interagency collaboration is increasingly recognized as an effective approach in prevention of crimes among young population. Sweden along with Denmark and Norway was among the pioneers in introducing the platform for information exchange between social services, schools, police and the recreational centers for youth, those agencies having the primary contact with young people. In doing so, the professionals involved found a way to address the issue of juvenile criminality together, pooling the resources and collecting essential information that they would otherwise not be able to access on their own. The aim of this qualitative study was to explore the perceptions of relevant professionals from social services, schools, police and the recreational centers on collaboration in prevention of juvenile criminality in the city of Gothenburg. In particular, understand professionals’ perspectives on their roles in collaboration, reflect on its strengths and weaknesses, and discover the role of a coordinator. In-depth qualitative interviews were conducted with 20 respondents (including one e-mail interview) representing each of the agencies and the coordinators. Insights from the Ecological systems theory (Bronfenbrenner, 1979) and the Craftsmanship theory of interagency collaboration (Bardach, 1998) were borrowed as a theoretical framework for the current study. Content analysis as an analytic strategy allowed to identify the recurring themes in the empirical data. The findings allowed to conclude that collaboration was conceptualized by professionals as an effective approach featuring trust, mutual understanding of the roles and responsibilities, communication and continuous information sharing as the pillars of collaboration. The dominating perceptions of collaboration related to the comprehensive character and integrated approach it has. In particular, collaboration was recognized as a platform for information exchange between partners, collective decision-making, and early identification of youth at risk with each partner’s contribution equally important. The study recognized that coordinators are assigned critical roles in collaboration, such as performing organizational responsibilities along with the casework. However, varying time commitments significantly affect their ability to answer the expectations of the team members. Coordinators and team members had similar expectations as to the skills, personal qualities and knowledge that coordinators should possess, yet, their points of view divided with regards to coordinator’s qualification. Despite general encouragement of collaborative practice and desire to work together, the study revealed significant barriers to collaboration, such as issues with information sharing and confidentiality, insufficient communication, police reorganization, power relations and status differences, inadequate follow up of the cases as well as problems related to prioritizing collaboration.
Peer reviewed: yes
Designation: Mestrado em Erasmus Mundus em Serviço Social com Famílias e Crianças
Appears in Collections:T&D-DM - Dissertações de mestrado

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