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Managing uncertainty key to success community team professionals

As a result of the decentralisation of responsibilities in the public domain, most Dutch municipalities have created community teams. These community teams are tasked with providing easy access to care and support for citizens and with providing solutions to fit their individual needs. This requires a different approach from professionals. In his dissertation ‘Understanding uncertainty’, Bernard Bernards looks into the experiences of professionals in community teams in dealing with uncertainty. The PhD Ceremony will take place on 19 April 2023.

What is the most important conclusion from your research?

Bernard Bernards: ‘Publications on public administration, but also on, for instance, psychology, often tend to emphasis the negative aspects of uncertainty. We’ve also noticed that administrators are often a bit apprehensive when it comes to uncertainty, because it tends to make procedures less predictable. For my dissertation, however, I focussed on how professionals experience uncertainty and I discovered that uncertainty can actually be very useful for them. For instance, uncertainty can leave room for interpretation, that can be used by the professionals to come up with innovative and custom solutions. For this to work, it is crucial that professionals feel supported by their team leaders. In the final substudy, I conclude that professionals can only benefit from the positive effects of uncertainty when they feel that they have the support of their team leaders.’

You can read the full article on the Dutch website

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