‘Money makes the world go around’: Social workers in parliamentary finance committees in Israel

Idit Weiss-Gal, Hani Nouman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Summary: The study examined social workers’ participation in two powerful parliamentary committees in Israel: the Finance Committee (FC) and the Economics Affairs Committee (EAC). It sought to better understand the characteristics of social workers who participated in these committees, their inputs, and to uncover differences between these findings and those on social workers in other parliamentary committees. Qualitative and quantitative content analyses were conducted on the minutes of the committees’ sessions between 1999–2013. Findings: At least one social worker spoke in 50 of the FC sessions and in 26 of the EAC sessions. These sessions dealt with a wide range of subjects, including national and local social services budgets, social problems, and vulnerable populations. The social workers expressed opinions on deficiencies in social policies and made recommendations for dealing with social problems. Their opinions conveyed support for social provision in a period in which the neo-liberal discourse was in ascendant. They also provided information on diverse aspects of current social policies. Most of the social worker participants were employed in the government sector. Implications: In terms of theory, the study augments our knowledge of social workers as policy actors. In terms of practice, it shows that finance committees are relevant and accessible arenas of social work activity. Awareness of the inputs and the roles identified can enable social workers to better understand their potential contribution to the discussions of such committees and conceptualize their possible roles in them.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)393-411
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Social Work
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015, © The Author(s) 2015.


  • Social work
  • parliamentary committees
  • policy practice
  • social policy
  • social service
  • social work practice
  • social workers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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