In recent years, welfare states throughout the world have implemented significant technology-based digitalization reforms, which challenged the entrenched arrangements of social programmes and transformed the ecology of welfare states. While their transformative and social-economic potential has often been celebrated –offering new pathways towards public administration; serving social empowerment and engagement; making social services accessible, inclusive, and more effective – the mechanisms that can successfully lead to such potential have not been explored as much. Drawing on the social-ecology theory, our study intends to fill this gap by presenting an exploratory analysis based on recent digitalization reforms towards old-age services programmes in Asian countries: Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan, and Korea. We identify three core topics based on qualitative content analysis – the role of technology, the transformation of care responsibility, and the impact of technology-based digitalization on welfare systems. The findings of this study contributed to the subsequent debate on the welfare states development of a theoretical perspective on Asian regions.
|Publication status||Published - 3 Dec 2022|
|Event||Hong Kong Sociological Association 23rd Annual Conference : Health and Wellbeing in (Post-) Pandemic Times - Lingnan University, Tuen Mun, Hong Kong|
Duration: 3 Dec 2022 → 3 Dec 2022
Conference number: 23
|Conference||Hong Kong Sociological Association 23rd Annual Conference : Health and Wellbeing in (Post-) Pandemic Times|
|Period||3/12/22 → 3/12/22|
|Other||As an unprecedented public health crisis, the COVID-19 pandemic has become the focal concern of sociologists around the world. Globally, there have been over six hundred million confirmed cases, including over six million of deaths. Over the past few years, we have experienced the tremendous impacts brought by the pandemic on various domains of life. Apart from infected and death cases, we have seen a surge of mental health issues, suicides, domestic violence, as well as plummeting economic growth and escalating unemployment and poverty rates. Whether to embrace the “new normal” by easing public health and social distancing measures is a contentious issue as much among world leaders as ordinary citizens. From a sociological perspective, most impacts brought by the pandemic are believed to be structural and long lasting. As not everyone has equal access to vaccines, personal protective equipment, healthcare and other resources, health and social inequalities are expected to be worsening. There are also concerns about the lack of affordable childcare and technological equipment for attending online classes during pandemic times, which would have lingering effects on education, digital, and social inequalities across generations.|
Against this background, this conference aims to address the pressing issues of health and wellbeing in pandemic and post-pandemic times from a sociological perspective. It provides a platform for scholars, students, and other stakeholders to discuss the implications of the pandemic for health and social inequalities among other issues. On that basis, participants will explore practical and policy responses to enhance health and wellbeing in the (post-)pandemic condition.