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Our work

Our research identifies and fills gaps in our understanding of the family justice system, to support better outcomes for children and families.

Explore our research

Project

Young people | 2021 – 2021

‘Not about us, without us’: Older children and young people’s experiences of support and services

In recent years there has been growing recognition of the increasing number of older children and young people coming before the family courts, and the complexity and diversity of their experiences. This has raised concerns about the capability of support services in and around the child welfare system to…

Type

Project

Region

England
Wales
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Featured
Resource

Contact | 2021

Modernising post-adoption contact: findings from a recent consultation

A wealth of research and evidence shows that when children are separated from their birth families and are either adopted, placed in long- term local authority care, or live with a kinship carer, maintaining contact with the people who are important to them—from separation and right throughout childhood—has significant…

Resource type

Spotlight

Region

England
Wales

Methodology

Consultation
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Project

Private law | 2021 – 2021

Parents’ and their children’s experiences of separation and support

What are the experiences of families when parents separate? Nuffield Family Justice Observatory is funding research at the University of Bristol to explore in detail the issues that parents undergoing separation and their children face, how they feel about them and what support they think might be helpful. The research…

Type

Project

Region

England
Wales
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Featured
Resource

COVID-19 | Remote hearings | 2021

Remote hearings in the family court post-pandemic

In June 2021, in anticipation of the easing of social distancing restrictions introduced during the COVID-19 pandemic, the President of the Family Division asked the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory to undertake a rapid consultation to inform the post-pandemic recovery plans of the family court and the Court of Protection….

Resource type

Report

Region

England
Wales

Methodology

Consultation
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Featured
Externally reviewed
Resource

Newborn babies | Young people | 2021

Health vulnerabilities of parents in care proceedings in Wales

This summary highlights the main findings of a report that provides an overview of health-based vulnerabilities experienced by mothers and fathers of children aged 0–17 across a two-year period prior to their involvement in section 31 care proceedings in Wales. The report was written by the Family Justice Data…

Resource type

Report
Summary

Region

Wales

Methodology

National administrative data
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Featured
Resource

Newborn babies | 2021

Explaining high rates of infants in care proceedings in deprived areas of Wales

This short report summarises results of recent analysis published by the Family Justice Data Partnership that aims to pinpoint the particular domains of deprivation associated with rates of infant entry to care in local authorities in Wales. The work complements research conducted as part of the Born into Care…

Resource type

Report

Region

Wales

Methodology

National administrative data
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Featured
Externally reviewed
Resource

Newborn babies | 2021

Newborn babies in urgent care proceedings in England and Wales

This summary highlights the main findings of Born into Care: Newborn Babies in Urgent Care Proceedings in England and Wales—a report commissioned by the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory and undertaken by the Family Justice Data Partnership, which is a collaboration between the University of Lancaster and the University of…

Resource type

Report
Summary

Region

England
Wales

Methodology

National administrative data
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Externally reviewed
Resource

Newborn babies | 2021

Recurrent care proceedings: five key areas for reflection from the research

All professionals involved in the family justice system have long been aware that some parents will experience more than one set of care proceedings. Some parents return to court on many occasions and lose multiple children to public or kinship care, or to adoption. This cycle of returning to…

Resource type

Spotlight

Region

England
Wales

Methodology

Evidence review
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Nuffield FJO in development

As part of our development we examined the research needs of the family justice system.

Our research methods

An overview of the different methods we use in our research.

Infographic Resource

What do we know about children in the family justice system?

Our infographic pulls together what we know, and what we don’t know, about children’s journeys through the family justice system from national data.

Child plays football barefoot

About the Observatory

We are an independent body, funded by the Nuffield Foundation.

The Nuffield Family Justice Observatory exists to find and fill the gaps in our understanding of the family justice system, highlight the areas where change will have the biggest impact, and foster collaboration to make that change happen.

Profile