Studying the outcomes of different types of demand in children's social care

About the project

Funder: Nuffield Foundation

Value: £184,129

Project Team

  • Professor Rick Hood, Kingston and St Georges
  • Mr Allie Goldacre, Kingston and St Georges
  • Mr Keith Clements, National Children's Bureau
  • Dr Calum Webb, University of Sheffield

Dates: 1 August 2021 to 31 July 2023

Project objectives

  • To identify and profile the underlying types of demand for CSC services in England
  • To explore the intermediate outcomes of provision.
  • To explore the longitudinal outcomes of provision, differentiated by demand type and intermediate outcomes.

Outcomes and impact

The study's intended outcomes are:

  • To identify, for the first time, the relationship between child characteristics, presenting needs, CSC intervention, and the outcomes of an intervention.
  • To evidence initial impact of the pandemic on child welfare inequalities.
  • To contribute to the evidence base on what works for whom in children's social care, in order to promote holistic approaches to planning services for, and with, families and communities.
  • To suggest policies, practices and service designs to reduce inequalities in outcomes.

Project report


Further information

For a brief overview of the project see the project summary (PDF). We would be very happy to talk to interested colleagues and groups about this research. For more information, please contact

Related projects

This project builds on the findings of two related studies.

The first was a detailed exploration of system conditions and welfare inequalities in children's social care, also funded by the Nuffield Foundation. This study showed how the socio-economic drivers of referral to statutory services combined with child characteristics, the needs identified in social work assessments, and the pressures and constraints on services, to shape disparities in intervention pathways.

The second study was the Nuffield-funded Child Welfare Inequalities Project, which detailed the relationship of deprivation, policy and other factors to inequalities in key child welfare intervention rates through separate and comparative studies in the four UK countries.

Faculty of Health, Science, Social Care and Education