The UK


The story of postwar government in the UK is a story of serial reform. From a twentieth-century welfare state, to New Public Management reforms, to New Labour and its reliance on nonprofits, to the Brexit era, the nation has sought one system after another as a means to provide efficient, effective services in a way that resonates with a difficult-to-satisfy populace. The most durable inheritance from the market-based reforms that began in the 1980s has been the perceptual switch from citizen to customer. The twenty-first century-public servant performs within a hybrid form of neoliberal ideology and consumerist discourse that manifests itself through managerialism. Citizens see themselves as consumers and government as seller. This perception may account for the lack of a relationship between authentically engaging in emotional labor and job outcomes. Perhaps there is less identity with the job itself than would be the case if the citizen–state encounter were more meaningful than a simple customer-seller exchange.