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Reframing Social Citizenship$
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Peter Taylor-Gooby

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199546701

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199546701.001.0001

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Rational Actors and Social Citizenship

Rational Actors and Social Citizenship

(p.89) 6 Rational Actors and Social Citizenship
Reframing Social Citizenship

Peter Taylor‐Gooby

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the arguments about whether social citizenship can be based on an individual rational actor logic or requires a framework of normative principles, embedded in the institutions of social provision and in policy-making. The arguments of Titmuss, Le Grand, and others about blood donorship, social care, and other areas where altruistic and humane rather than self-regarding values appear to be central are considered. Individual rational actor approaches can explain how reciprocity and a limited social inclusion may be sustained, as Chapter 4 showed. Analysis of social psychological, sociological, and economic evidence shows that a full understanding of trust rests on both the alignment of interest that a rational actor logic can explain and also the recognition of values of commitment and care in the trusted person. These are contradicted when action is driven by externally imposed incentives. The trust deficit is a central issue in rational actor reform of social provision.

Keywords:   Titmuss, Le Grand, blood, social care, commitment, trust, reciprocity, inclusion, altruism

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