Organisations adapting to dual aspirations of individualisation and collaboration in the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) market

Michele Griffiths, Eloise Hummell, Karen Fisher, Samantha Borg, Catherine Needham, Alyssa Venning

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Disability support is often provided at the interface with other human services such as health, education, and employment agencies. This can present many organisational problems for people receiving support and the organisations that provide it. Individualised funding is one attempt to ease problems of fragmentation and unmet needs, but perversely, it introduces further interface complexities as organisations consider how to manage their service provision and financial structures. Drawing on interviews with 28 managers, the focus in this paper is on organisational and interface changes and challenges following the introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in Australia, and the adaptive strategies of organisations to provide individualised and coordinated supports. The three themes derived from the thematic analysis, adopting a commercial mindset, finding a business niche, and working across complex interfaces, epitomise the benefits, constraints, and consequences of new market mechanisms for the delivery of supports, and how organisations are adjusting to a more commercial-orientated sector while also creatively negotiating multiple funding and governance systems. The findings contribute to understandings of how individualisation is creating new dynamics of local disability support governance and collaboration in service provision.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAustralian Journal Of Public Administration
Early online date5 Jun 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 5 Jun 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Ethical approval was gained from Griffith University Human Research Ethics Committee (GU 2019/406) and Metro South Hospital and Health Service Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC/2019/QMS/59522). The broader project is funded by an Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Project (ARCDP190102711) grant.


  • National Disability Insurance Scheme
  • human service organisations
  • individualised disability support
  • marketisation of public services

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Public Administration


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