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Institutional Racism in Bureaucratic Decision-Making: A Case Study in the Administration of Homelessness Law

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This article reports findings from an ethnographic research project which investigated the influence of judicial review experiences on the decision-making processes of three heavily litigated local government agencies. The research focused on the administration of homelessness law in local government in England. However, the particular findings which emerged from fieldwork and which are discussed in this article concern institutional racism. ‘Institutional racism’, of course, is a much-used and contested concept and may refer to a number of sources of discrimination. The aim of this article is both modest and particular. It presents a case study of how systemic discrimination may be socially produced within the bureaucratic processes of organizational decision-making.

Document Type: Original Article


Affiliations: Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, Wolfson College, University of Oxford, UK

Publication date: September 1, 2000


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