Emerging Changes in Attitudes to Inter-Institutional Collaboration: The Case of Organizations Providing Social Services in Communities
Raišienė, Agota Giedrė
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The need to change the government’s role and focus more on stakeholders’ collaboration when striving to get over economic, social and environmental challenges is highlighted in strategic documents of the most of the EU countries. Also, scholars argue that collaboration between institutions and sectors is a significant when seeking for sustainability of a country. It is evident that improvement of interinstitutional collaboration practice requires a permanent deep look into a situation despite dozens research which have already determined the key factors of collaboration effectiveness. Thus, in our paper, we aim to identify the most important drivers for strengthening interinstitutional collaboration in organizations providing social services. With this aim in mind, we have examined the social service employees’ attitudes to interinstitutional collaboration as a means to ensure quality of services and, then, we have identified the key factors that allow forming strong long-term collaboration relationships between institutions providing social services. Our research shows that interinstitutional collaboration gives an opportunity to provide better quality social services, thus contributing to the improvement of social service standards in the state. On the other hand, we have observed that practitioners tend to put lesser emphasis on the importance of leadership while not mentioning joint values and collaboration process control mechanisms at all. Finally, it should be noted that in the case of our research, no interinstitutional collaboration constraints described in literature were emphasized. It seems that successful cases of interinstitutional collaboration have one feature in common – the problems are avoided, and misunderstandings are solved before their escalation.
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