Entrepreneurial Safeguarding in Public Services: Innovating with experience

Alexandra James, Jan Myers, Sarah Lonbay

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


This paper focuses on adult social care services in the North-east of England to examine whether there exists or is potential for entrepreneurial ways of working that support the aims and objectives of adult social care. Much has been written about public entrepreneurship in recent years, predominantly in North America, yet it is described as ‘one of the most enduring paradoxes of any examination of the public sector’ (Bernier & Hafsi, 2007, p. 488). Public services - and specifically those operated under the auspices of local governments in the UK - are generally viewed as the opposite of entrepreneurial, constrained by demarcated areas of responsibility, accountability and methods of practice (Bernier & Hafsi, 2007). Certainly, when looking at the roles and responsibilities of those professionals working in local authority social services in England there is a tension between safeguarding - protecting individual rights and wellbeing - and demonstrating an ‘entrepreneurial mindset’ of risk-taking, proactiveness, and service innovation. It is important, therefore, in the context of continued austerity, local government cuts and shifting priorities for public service providers, to consider what public entrepreneurship (and intrapreneurship) is and how it manifests in this landscape. In order to do this, the paper draws on the concepts of systemic and function entrepreneurship (Bernier & Hafsi, 2007; Roberts, 2006).
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 9 Nov 2017
EventInstitute of Small Business and Entrepreneurship 2017: ‘Borders’, prosperity and entrepreneurial responses - Belfast, United Kingdom
Duration: 8 Nov 20179 Nov 2017


ConferenceInstitute of Small Business and Entrepreneurship 2017
Abbreviated titleISBE 2017
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


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