Projekter pr. år
Automated decision support systems, which incorporate artificial intelligence and big data, are receiving significant attention in the public sector in Europe and in Denmark, where new tech-nologies are being developed and implemented to improve social welfare services under pres-sure. Critical reflection on such systems is paramount since they can cause harm, violate funda-mental rights, discriminate and reproduce social patterns. In this article, we investigate the ra-tionales that shape the development of a decision support system to assess referrals concerning child neglect. The investigation is based on a qualitative case study conducted in 2019-2020 at the Citizen Centre Children and Young People, Copenhagen Municipality, Denmark. The article investigates: How do key actors involved in the development of a DSS for assessing referrals con-cerning child neglect make sense of the technology? Based on that, what rationales, potential for and limits to critical reflection can we discern? The analysis shows that the development of DSS is an organisational and socio-technical experiment that is concerned just as much with creating a governable sense of reality as changing that reality. Reflections touch upon risks related to cat-egorisation and opacity but also constitute organisational limits to critical reflection. The DSS becomes an unquestioned obligatory passage point as a potent solution to multiple complex sys-temic, organisational and professional problems. Due to ambiguity and deep-rooted uncertainty, trust in knowledge about and resources for social workers’ assessment and work with child pro-tection becomes an essential glue and test of the potential of DSSs in social work.