BiographyI am a qualified social worker, and practised for nearly twenty years before moving into academia. My experience as a practitioner and manager was primarily in relation to statutory social work with families requiring support, and children in need of protection from harm.
I have researched and published on a range of issues related to familial violence, and have a particular interest in the longer term impact of childhood adversity across the lifecourse.
I am a former chair of the British Association for the Study and Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect, and a former member of the Safeguarding Board for Northern Ireland. I have sat, and currently sit on a number of professional and governmental committees in relation to both child protection and domestic violence. In 2012 I was honoured to receive a Churchill Fellowship to study responses to perpetrators of domestic violence in Canada and Norway.
I am currently employed as a Senior Lecturer in Social Work at Queen's University Belfast, where I am also a Fellow of the Centre for Evidence and Social Innovation.
Areas of Research / Professional Expertise
My areas of research interest relate to:
- familial violence
- working with perpetrators of domestic violence
- the safeguarding of children from abuse and neglect
- the development of child welfare policy
- the impact of childhood adversity across the lifecourse