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university of tampere: institute for advanced social research: fellows: 2011-2012:
Institute for Advanced Social ResearchUniversity of TampereInstitute for Advanced Social Research




Katja Kuusisto

Postdoctoral Fellow, 1 August 2011–31 July 2012

Office: Pinni B 4001

Tel. +358 (0)40 190 9846



As a clear content focus in my career, I have specialized in research of substance abuse and its treatment. I completed doctor’s degree in social work in March 2010 (Kolme reittiä alkoholismista toipumiseen. Tutkimus muutoksesta hoidon ja vertaistuen avulla sekä ilman professionaalista hoitoa. [Three routes to recovery from alcoholism: A study on change through professional treatment, mutual help and spontaneous recovery]).

My present research interests concentrate on the secondary analyses which have unfolded within the work in a research group of the Academy of Finland, the Research Programme on Substance Use and Addictions 2007-2010. I worked as a postdoctoral researcher focusing especially on clients' expectations regarding the treatment and their own self-efficacy and the significance of the client's gender for the treatment outcome.

The structural and functional change which has taken place in the 2000's in the municipal organization has raised profitability as a principal objective in decision-making, also within social services. With the new public management, the way of organizing the welfare services has shifted the focus towards structures more familiar in business. Putting social services out to competitive bidding has become more common. Therefore, the quality and the evaluation of the effectiveness of the services have become more important. The service is often produced by the one who is able to be economically competitive. However, economy must be seen as only one dimension to measure the quality of the services. The measurements often examine the flows of clients although they do not give information about the quality of the service or about its contents. Rather, they describe productivity; how the service is produced. However, it has to be borne in mind that within the social services the effectiveness of services does not coincide with the disappearing of the service need of a client. The problems are often complex and progress in treatment slow. No wonder that criticism has been voiced regarding effectiveness. During the forthcoming academic year I aim to evaluate the services from that position. Paying attention to the client's point of view makes the examination of the effectiveness ethically sustainable.

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Visiting address: Ratapihankatu 55, 2nd and 3rd floor
Mailing address: FI-33014 University of Tampere, Finland
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Last update: 6.10.2011 15.37 Muokkaa

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