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The Myth of Measurement
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The Myth of Measurement
Inspection, audit, targets and the public sector



August 2021 | 128 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

In the public sector inspection regimes and performance targets provide a powerful and dominant narrative, often placing pressure on professionals and organisations to continuously quantify the quality of services and to achieve targets.

This book explores the background, development, techniques and impact of such regimes across areas of the public sector including schools, universities, police forces, children’s services and health services. Putting inspection and audit regimes under scrutiny, the author questions their role and function across these organisations and builds a persuasive critical argument for the re-thinking of public accountability mechanisms and techniques.

 
Chapter 1: Measuring everything in the public sector
 
Chapter 2: Assessing quality in universities: measuring teaching and research
 
Chapter 3: Targets and transparency in the NHS: promoting patient choice through the audit culture
 
Chapter 4: Schools and the role of Ofsted: 'you could hear the sound of staple guns in the corridors from dawn to dusk!'
 
Chapter 5: Children's social care: measuring the immeasurable
 
Chapter 6: Crime and policing: holding the police accountable
 
Chapter 7: Rethinking the audit culture: towards an alternative

Nick Frost

Nick Frost is Emeritus Professor at Leeds Beckett University, UK. He was a local authority social worker and an adult educator, before joining Leeds Beckett University in 2009. Nick has over a decade of experience as Chair of three different Local Safeguarding Children Boards. He has addressed conferences on child welfare issues in many countries and acted as a consultant to a number of governments and voluntary organisations. Nick has produced over 20 books including, most recently, of Safeguarding Children and Young People (Sage, 2021). More About Author