A systematic review on safeguarding young people who have experienced child sexual exploitation (CSE) during transitions to adult services

Authors at Nottingham Trent University aim to identify the difficulties that children and young people, who have been vulnerable to/have experienced child sexual abuse, experience in transitioning from child to adult services.


Review / In progress

Estimated completion

Spring 2021

Evaluated by

Nottingham Trent University

Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) is a key area of concern for local authority children’s services and, more recently, adult services with safeguarding duties towards victims and survivors. Understandings of ‘transition’ and transition planning by and between Children’s and Adults Services varies, with different statutory duties and protocols on information sharing. This review will serve to establish evidence and articulate concerns that are being experienced by a range of practitioners and academic researchers. seeking to present a way forward.

The main research question this review aims to answer is: what does the literature say about safeguarding practice for young people and young adults (aged 16-25) who have experienced CSE before or during transition from child to adult services? 

The review will aim to draw out implications for practice, with an over-arching focus on improving outcomes for children, young people and young adults. It will aim to provide an increased understanding of referral and assessment processes within children’s and adults’ social care and other agencies particularly with regards to safeguarding sexually exploited young people, as well as an increased understanding of key system-level challenges in the area. It will identify successful transition outcomes and challenges for these young people. Finally, it will also aim to provide recommendations for practice that close gaps and increase success of safeguarding and support.

The systematic review uses a qualitative methodology, and will review and synthesise the literature for young people (16-25 years old) using a combination of meta-aggregation and thematic analysis. The final report will be of use to researchers, commissioners of services for young people and policy makers in order to optimise the safeguarding of young people transitioning from child to adult services.

It is anticipated that the final report will be published in Spring 2021.