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Abstract

The Dutch Child Index is a nationwide information system (IS) designed to alert professionals about each other’s involvedness with at-risk children, enabling identification of individual at-risk children, improvement of multidisciplinary collaboration and timely interventions. In this paper, we study the infrastructural work and complexities engaged in making the collaborative system of the Child Index function in real life and in care situations. We use the information infrastructure perspective as an analytical lens and describe the infrastructural work that is performed to make the Child Index become part of actual practices. We also identify flexibility, heterogeneity and the connection to existing platforms as difficulties participants have had while performing infra- structural work. The paper makes two main contributions. First, it provides an in-depth empirical analysis of this specific collaborative and preventive infrastructure. Second, based on this empirical analysis, we argue that when developing and understanding infrastructures, it is important to identify limits to the integrative capacity and disciplining power of ISs as result of conflicting infrastructural work due to incommensurable politics.

perspective as an analytical lens and describe the infrastructural work that is performed to make the Child Index become part of actual practices. We also identify flexibility, heterogeneity and the connection to existing platforms as difficulties participants have had while performing infrastructural work. The paper makes two main contributions. First, it provides an in-depth empirical analysis of this specific collaborative and preventive infrastructure. Second, based on this empirical analysis, we argue that when developing and understanding infrastructures, it is important to identify limits to the integrative capacity and disciplining power of IS’s as result of conflicting infrastructural work due to incommensurable politics.

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