New PhD programme announced to increase quantitative research and evidence in children’s social care

01 April 2021

What Works for Children’s Social Care (WWCSC) is pleased to announce our new PhD Programme based at University College London.

This PhD programme, which will fund three doctoral students starting in October 2021, will focus on quantitative research in children’s social care, and draws together a multi-disciplinary supervision team from across the UBEL Doctoral Training Centre, including UCL and London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. We are particularly interested in applications from social workers and/or people with experience of children’s social care.

Recruitment is now open for prospective students interested in working on any of the three projects, which will focus on;

  • The impacts of Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hubs and different ways of delivering them
  • The impacts of virtual schools for looked after children
  • Extending and expanding existing evaluations of family drug and alcohol courts.

What Works for Children’s Social Care is committed to increase the quantity and quality of quantitative, and especially causal research in children’s social care, and this initiative, alongside our broader programmes of grant funding and training, is a core part of this.

Students will be based at UCL, but will have the opportunity to work closely with the team at WWCSC, and will be provided with space to work in our central London office, to participate in our annual doctoral conference, and to collaborate with our team on research projects.

As well as academic expertise and passion for the subject matter, we are keen to attract students from a diverse range of backgrounds, including non-white students, students with care experience, and those who are the first in their family to attend university.

Michael Sanders, Chief Executive of What Works for Children’s Social Care, said;

“I’m very excited to see the launch of this collaboration with UCL and London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, which will focus on answering important quantitative questions about the effect of policy and practice within children’s social care. I can’t wait to meet the students who will form the next generation of impactful scholars in this area.”

Dr Jenny Woodman, Associate Professor at UCL said:

“This is a fantastic opportunity for three talented students to work as a cohort within a critical mass of world class quantitative researchers at UCL and London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Students will develop careers in quantitative social research whilst making a real difference to the lives of children and their families through improving what we know about how to help families through children’s social care and other public services. “

Find out more and apply