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Vol 23 No 5 May/June 2018

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The Simulated Client

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Fran WasoffSenior Lecturer, Department of Social Policy, University of Edinburgh, R. Emerson DobashProfessor of Social Research, Department of Social Policy and Social Work, University of Manchester

ISBN13: 9781856289207
ISBN: 1856289206
Published: September 1996
Publisher: Routledge
Format: Hardback
Price: Out of print

This text presents an innovative method for studying the work of professionals with clients that was applied to an evaluation study of legislation and of lawyers working with clients seeking a divorce. With the simulated client methods, the researcher plays the role of simulated or hypothetical clients with predetermined characteristics who are consulting a lawyer's office and the lawyer conducts business as usual. The method overcomes problems of access due to client confidentiality that are commonly found in research of professional groups. It is a qualitative but focused method for evaluation research which has strengths for making comparisons across professional practice. The book should be useful to those conducting comparisons across professionals and other elite groups working with clients as well as those interested in the socio-legal study of legal professionals.

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The need for method; developing the simulated client; in the field and after; identifying similarities using the simulated client; finding variation using the simulated client.