Digitizing the Care Crisis: Technological Promises Meet Care and Care Work
Sprache des Vortragstitels:
Transforming Care Conference 2023
Sprache des Tagungstitel:
Within the current care crisis, digital technologies are imagined to support care-provision and the
caresector. Thereby, they should cope with phenomena like care-shortages and the demographic change.
Digital technologies, such as robotics and digital documentation, promise a technological solution to the
crisis by facilitating good care and care-work. These technologies are expected to do so by saving the
care-workers time and supporting them in their work. Drawing on qualitative content analysis of interviews
and a document analysis, my contribution scrutinizes the interrelationship between the narratives of R&D
and technology companies and the experiences of care-workers.1 The first step presents the theoretical
and methodological approach, following Deuten and Rip?s (2000) understanding of narratives, to analyze
the promises of digitalization in the care-sector. In a second step, I zoom into these promises surrounding
imagined technological solutions for the care crisis provided by R&D and technology companies. In a third
step, these promises are discussed and contrasted with the experiences of care-workers in the field of
senior care. Our findings suggest that while a nuanced view on the effect of these technologies is crucial,
aspects of the digitalization of care have the potential to perpetuate the current care crisis by potentially
deteriorating working conditions and contradicting the care-workers standards of good care, especially
when it comes to the implementation of robotics or the increasing documentation requirements.
1 The research was conducted within the research project ?Digitalization and work organization: narratives,
practices and opportunities for participation?, funded by the Vienna Chamber of Labor.