Skip to content

Linking children’s social care data to information about their care proceedings to understand the use of care proceedings and their effects on parents, children and local authorities

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages9
JournalChild and Family Social Work
Early online date5 Feb 2020
DateAccepted/In press - 23 Jan 2020
DateE-pub ahead of print (current) - 5 Feb 2020


Care proceedings are the most powerful child protection intervention; local authorities make applications for over 20,000 children each year in England and Wales. The Department for Education holds two administrative databases of children who receive services, for Children looked-after (CLA) and Children in Need (CiN). These databases do not record the use of care proceedings. Data linkage is a powerful tool for revealing patterns not visible from a single dataset; the Outcomes for children before and after care proceedings reform study linked these administrative records with a research database of care proceedings to examine children’s care and service journeys associated with care proceedings. The researchers also devised a simplified method for use by local authorities with their own records and tested this with North Yorkshire County Council. Analysis of the linked data reveals how care proceedings are used and the impact of care proceedings on care demand. It provides the basis for analysis of cohorts of children subject to proceedings and feedback to social workers, children’s guardians and the judges and lawyers on their decisions and children’s outcomes.

    Research areas

  • Children in Care System, children in need, looked after children, data linkage, child care policy and practice, leaving care curve

Download statistics

No data available



  • Full-text PDF (final published version)

    Rights statement: This is the final published version of the article (version of record). It first appeared online via Wiley at Please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.

    Final published version, 660 KB, PDF document

    Licence: CC BY


View research connections

Related faculties, schools or groups