Professions Unbound

  • Edgar A BurnsEmail author


This final chapter brings together arguments developed across the book that professions’ success in western societies was achieved through their double claims of expertise and goodness. Initial governmental ‘outsourcing’ within early modern patronage sits very differently today. Organisational and marketplace values are today being reconfigured, unbundling these built-together and mutually reinforced claims. The continuing belief that professions’ functional roles explain their significance in society misrecognises that professions’ core justifications are unbundling. The politics of expertise around new differentiation and specialisation creates new pressures to measure and manage performance. A contemporary typology of professional service delivery forms is advanced using socioeconomic and sociocultural logics from Terence Johnson’s original work and tracing the unbundling and rebundling processes in today’s societal changes through global, corporate and digital technological shifts.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Waikato UniversityNapierNew Zealand

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