Paper $42.95 ISBN: 9781447328940 Published April 2016 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $115.00 ISBN: 9781447328933 Published April 2016 For sale in North and South America only

All Our Welfare

Towards Participatory Social Policy

Peter Beresford

All Our Welfare

Peter Beresford

Distributed for Bristol University Press

360 pages | 6 x 9 | © 2016
Paper $42.95 ISBN: 9781447328940 Published April 2016 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $115.00 ISBN: 9781447328933 Published April 2016 For sale in North and South America only
The UK welfare state is under sustained ideological and political attack. In All Our Welfare, Peter Beresford explores the establishment and trajectory of the postwar welfare state and offers a blueprint for participatory social policy in the future. By showing that early welfare policies resulted from popular revulsion against the inequity of the market and associated poor laws, Beresford reveals that the welfare state was ultimately undermined by its failure to engage the people it was intended to help. Noting the subsequent similar failure of neoliberal social policy to engage people in improving their own welfare, Beresford draws on the pioneering theories and practices of current welfare service user movements to outline participatory approaches to social policy theory, knowledge development, policy, practice, and support, identifying a series of principles that could underpin them and offering inclusive models for sustainable change. Also including fascinating vignettes from his own family’s experience, Beresford demonstrates the value of user knowledge.
List of photographs and sources
Foreword by Yasmin Alibhai-Brown
Introduction: Owning not othering our welfare

Part One: The legacy of the past
1. Setting the scene for welfare and social policy
2. The Past
3. The origins of the welfare state
4. The welfare state and pressures from the war
5. The principles of the welfare state
6. The welfare state: Whose consensus?
7. Back to the past
8. What’s wrong with social policy?

Part Two: The way to the future
9. The beginnings of something different
10. A new set of principles for social policy
11. Reconceiving research
12. A new approach to social policy
13. Welfare policy for the twenty first century
14. Supporting each other in the future
15. Changing welfare

Afterword: The future: a different way forward? 
Appendix One The family
Appendix Two Research projects and related publications
Review Quotes
Diana Rose, King’s College London | Times Higher Education
“This book does not duck the complexities of the history of the welfare state and its current forms. It interleaves formal analyses with personal testimony to great effect. A wonderful trip down memory lane for me! Beresford’s proposed alternative—where those receiving the range of collective services are final arbiters over the forms they take—is well researched and refreshing.”
Sean Creaney, PhD candidate in criminology at Liverpool John Moores University | Times Higher Education
“Beresford details how the current welfare system has been subject to ‘sustained ideological and political attack.’ The present direction of travel, he argues, is especially disconcerting and here he challenges conventional wisdom and in turn subjects the dominant narrative to critical inquiry. He puts forward a very convincing alternative, based on democracy and service-user participation.”
Ashwin Desai, NBC Universal | LSE Review of Books
All Our Welfare is a thought-provoking book that offers a timely challenge to much contemporary academic social policy. . . . It is enriched by the author’s personal experience.”
Bernadette Meaden | Ekklesia
“An illuminating, enjoyable, and encouraging read which is highly recommended.”
“This book is a rollicking good read! All Our Welfare by Beresford is accessible and engaging not only because it comes from deep personal and professional perspectives backed up by evidence, but also because it’s been written from the heart.”
Change Agents blog
"This book has already established itself in contributing not only to how we think about social policy, but to how we think about our relationships with users and therefore the constructs we develop to humanize our services."
Citizen's Income Trust
"Beresford's book has the character of its message: participation. The ubiquity of personal experience makes it a really engaging book to read."
Critical Policy Studies
"All Our Welfare provides an astute and important critique of British social policy as a discipline, as well as acting as a manifesto for changes in it."
Critical and Radical Social Work
"Beresford’s book makes an integral contribution towards reconceiving the welfare of citizens, rather than social policy for citizens."
Ethics and Social Welfare
“An interesting introductory history of UK welfare policies and a particularly useful resource for understanding the principles and practices of social policy service user movements.”
Owen Jones, author and Guardian columnist
“Welfare reform doesn’t need to mean cuts and privatization. As this crucial book demonstrates, a dynamic, participatory system is an alternative to both the market and top-down bureaucracies. A much-needed contribution.”
Peter Tatchell, director of the Peter Tatchell Foundation
“An imaginative, challenging, and valuable rethink of the welfare state, with a unique bottom-up focus from the perspective and interests of the people it was created to serve.”
Alan Walker, University of Sheffield
“An incisive, compelling, and highly personal case for a more democratic and participative social policy which fills the user perspective gap left by many others.”
Mo Stewart, disability studies researcher
“A remarkable work that highlights the past, present, and possible future welfare state from a ‘participatory perspective’ and offers the reader the opportunity to consider a future welfare state that actually includes user involvement in developing social policy.”
Imogen Tyler, Lancaster University
All Our Welfare deftly weaves together history, policy, and personal experiences to examine the pasts and possible futures of welfare in Britain. This timely and moving book is an important reminder that what welfare is really about is ‘how we look after each other in society.’”
Michael Lavalette, Liverpool Hope University
“Beresford is one of our best and most trenchant critics of the impact of neoliberal policies on social work services, service users, and welfare provision more generally. This stimulating and important book deserves to be read widely.”
Iain Ferguson, University of the West of Scotland
“Few people are better qualified than Beresford to write a book which recognizes the strengths of the welfare state while also challenging its limitations. Essential reading for students, practitioners, and activists.”
Sean Creaney, advisor at social justice charity Peer Power, UK
“This text is a breath of fresh air. It offers an alternative to the dominant neoliberal approach, advocating greater service user involvement and prioritizing shared decision making. All Our Welfare is essential reading for anyone with an interest in health and social care and social policy.”
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