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Professor Judith Masson

Chilld Law and Family Law

My research focuses on child protection systems, particularly the interaction between law and social work, and local authorities and courts, empirically using quantiative and qualitative methods and through contextual socio-legal analysis.  I have undertaken major empirical studies on  emergency intervention in child protection; care proceedings, including legal aid costs; parental representation in care proceedings;  the operation and impact of the pre-proceedings process for care proceedings; and the reforms to care proceedings and their impact on children's outcomes.   My empirical research uses mixed methods, combining quantitative and qualitative approaches and has included ethnography, action research and data linkage with the main databases for children's social care. In addition I undertake doctrinal analysis of child law and its development nationally and internationally. I am currntly working on a study of Dicharge of Care Orders, funded by the Nuffield Foundation.