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Free Content Enterprising professionals - Scientists, doctors and their customers

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The last 20 years have heralded a fundamental change in approach towards the UK public sector. Successive governments have enacted policy changes aimed at bringing public services closer to the market. This paper examines how this re-framing has been experienced by public sector scientists and general medical practitioners. Whereas for scientists the concept of the customer was seen to describe adequately the social relations and financial consequences embedded in their work, GPs were largely more resistant to the label. The evidence presented reveals the diversity of 'customers' faced by these scientists and GPs, and their wide-ranging and sometimes contradictory needs and expectations. This increased customer orientation is seen to have implications for GPs' and scientists' working practices and their sense of professional expertise.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: February 1, 2004

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