The implementation of the Glasgow Women's Health Policy : a case-study of multi-agency working
Multi-agency working as an approach to tackling complex and inter-related problems has increasingly been advocated in recent years in a variety of policy contexts. The research in this thesis concerns the development and implementation process of one such policy, the Glasgow Women's Health Policy. This Policy was developed by the Glasgow Healthy City Project Women's Health Working Group and is based on a social/holistic model of health. The research analyses, as a case study of multi-agency working, the process through which the Women's Health Policy was implemented, and identifies the enablers and barriers to that process. The research consists of a retrospective analysis of the implementation of the Women's Health Policy within the statutory partner organisation of the Glasgow Healthy City Project. Using a qualitative approach, the research involved three primary methods of data collection: semi-structured interviews, documentary analysis and observation. Fifty-seven interviews were conducted with a range of key informants from the statutory sector organisations, which provided the main source of data. The analysis identifies a range of action associated with the development and implementation of the Women's Health Policy by the Women's Health Working Group and statutory sector organisations. The implementation process of the Women's Health Policy was enabled by: the collaborative development of the Policy; the agency of key individuals with access to power; and the establishment of women's fora within the organisations. Barriers to the process included the marginalisation of both 'women's issues' within gendered organisations, and the social/holistic model of health in relation to the dominant biomedical paradigm prevailing within organisations. In addition a range of other impediments relating to organisational structures and cultures were identified as being common to all policy implementation.