Patchworks of Purpose
The Development of Provincial Social Assistance Regimes in Canada
To examine patterns of social assistance provision specific to particular provinces, Boychuk develops a five-fold typology consisting of “residual,” “market/family enforcement,” “market performance,” “conservative,” and “redistributive” models. He uses this typology to compare development of assistance provision in the provinces, provincial responses to federal initiatives, and unique trajectories of assistance regimes. He concludes by surveying some of the broader implications of his findings for issues such as the development of national standards and the impact of globalization on social assistance provision in Canada. Patchworks of Purpose is an important book for students of social assistance and social policy as well as for scholars interested in Canadian public policy, Canadian federalism, and Canadian politics in general.
"Patchworks of Purpose is the first study to identify significant provincial differences using a consistent theoretical framework. This is an extremely important issue and, at a time when the Canada Assistance Plan (CAP) is being dismantled, it is salutary to read an analysis that suggests that the national standards much praised by the defenders of CAP have been illusory. Boychuk's work is essential reading and source material for scholars in related areas in public administration and public policy in general and in social policy in particular. " Leslie Bella, School of Social Work, Memorial University "Superb! Patchworks of Purpose is one of the best works I have read on social assistance in Canada or elsewhere. " Alain Noël, Department of Political Science, Université de Montréal