It has been proposed that the marketisation of society and social risks is important because, by engendering economic and cultural fragmentation, contemporary social policies are characterised less by interventions intended to reduce structural inequalities and more by a pre-emptive management of agency, the latter being a kind of ‘situational engineering’ through which the environmental possibilities of action are manipulated. This chapter discusses questions of choice and market provision by outlining a version of paternalism called ‘environmental paternalism’. In addition, it argues that choice does not necessarily translate into ‘market choice’; that it can imply forms of negotiation and information dissemination that avoids the corroding producer-consumer dichotomies of recent public sector reforms.
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