Publication details

Constructing professional services : For-profit care and domestic work agencies in the Czech Republic



Year of publication 2018
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Women's Studies International Forum
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Keywords Domestic work; Care work; Professionalization; Czech Republic
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Description This article addresses the developing market of care and domestic work in the Czech Republic, a former socialist country. While the research on paid care and domestic work is growing, less attention has been paid to the patterns that emerge when the services are demanded and supplied by intermediary, bureaucratized, for-profit placement agencies. Although the delegation of tasks through agencies has many similarities with the situation outside the market, it is in other regards quite different, generating different questions and challenges. Drawing upon 20 qualitative interviews with the owners of for-profit care and domestic work placement agencies, we illuminate how bureaucratized paid care and domestic work is organized in the post-socialist Czech Republic. We focus on how the agency owners create professionalism and the ways that care and domestic work services are professionalized in the social, cultural, and historical context of the Czech Republic. Based on our research, the praxis of the care and domestic work placement agencies is more about the professionalization of the service than the professionalization of the work itself. This professionalization is achieved through processes of de-personalization and bureaucratization.
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