Dr Jane Akister

Reader in social work

Faculty:Faculty of Health, Social Care & Education

Department:School of Education & Social Care

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Social Work and Social Policy

Jane Akister is a Reader in social work with extensive research experience with local authority partners in Cambridgeshire, Essex and Southend.

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Jane.Akister@anglia.ac.uk

Background

Jane has developed expertise in evaluating the effectiveness of projects commissioned by the local authorities to ascertain whether they are delivering the services commissioned and also whether the local authorities are getting 'value for money'. This research includes projects commissioned by local authorities from Barnardo's, Community Service Volunteers and Home-Start. Currently Jane is involved in the evaluation of Cambridgeshire's service transformation, advising on approaches to 'value for money'.

Research interests

  • Role of the third sector in family support;
  • Mental wellbeing of children and families;
  • Value for Money
  • Research Areas: Role of the third sector in family support; Mental wellbeing of children and families; Value for Money.

Areas of research supervision

  • Child Protection
  • Implementing evidence based practice
  • Parental Mental Health and child Protection

Teaching

Systemic Practice

Qualifications

  • Association of Family Therapy 1979 (Editorial Board Journal of Family Therapy 1999 - 2007)
  • Association of Child Psychology & Psychiatry 1981 (Board Member, 2007)
  • International Alliance of Teacher Scholars, Inc. 1998
  • Higher Education Academy 2000
  • Registered Social Worker 2004

Memberships, editorial boards

  • Editor of Practice: Social Work in Action, 2013 – present..
  • Association of Family Therapy 1979 (Editorial Board Journal of Family Therapy 1999 - 2007)
  • Association of Child Psychology & Psychiatry 1981 (Board Member, 2007)
  • International Alliance of Teacher Scholars, Inc. 1998
  • Higher Education Academy 2000
  • Registered Social Worker 2004

Research grants, consultancy, knowledge exchange

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2010/2015 Cambridgeshire County Council Do Behaviour Difficulties in Primary Education Signal Problems in the Transition to Secondary Education?
2013 Essex County Council: Tendring EssexFamily Tendring: Family Worker Service. A Research Evaluation (with Niamh O’Brien (PI))
2013 -2016 Cambridgeshire County Council/ Cambridge University SWFF Project SWFF Project: Evaluating the Unit model of Children’s service delivery (consultancy)
2013 Sawston Locality Team  CCC ROAR project (consultancy)
2015 Essex Police “To find out the areas (including the communities) and methods of public engagement that Essex Police District Commanders should focus on most to improve public confidence.”

Selected recent publications

  • Akister, J., 2011 "Protecting Children: The central role of knowledge". Practice: Practice, 23(5), 311-323.
  • Akister, J. and O’Brien, N. (2012) Using Volunteers in Home-Based Child Protection - Preliminary Indications for the Mental Wellbeing of Family Members. International Journal of Business and Social Research, 2(6), 226-240.
  • Akister, J. (2013) Expert Guide on Parenting Problems. ACAMH website.
  • Akister, J and Cleary, T. (2014) Using Volunteers in Child Protection Work: Emerging questions for social work. Childhood Remixed. February, 2014, 21-31.
  • Akister, J. and O’Brien, N. (2014) The Mental Wellbeing of Children and Parents When There are Child Protection Concerns – Can volunteers help? Childhood Remixed. February, 2014, 6-14.
  • Cleary, T. and Akister, J. (2014) The Experiences of a Commissioning Organisation in Using Volunteers to Work alongside Child Protection Case Workers. International Journal of Business and Social Science, 5(4), 20-27.
  • Sadler, K., Akister, J. and Burch, S. (2014) Who are the Young People who are Not in Education, Employment or Training? An application of the risk factors a rural area in the UK. International Journal of Social Work. International Social Work. Doi: 10.1177/0020872813515010

Recent presentations and conferences

  • Akister, J. and O’Brien, N. 2011.The role of volunteers in home-based child protection intervention: Impact on the mental health of family members. American Association of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Conference, Toronto, Canada.
  • Akister, J., O’Brien, N. and Cleary, T. 2011. The role of volunteers in home-based child protection intervention: key research findings. CSV (ViCP) Volunteers in Child Protection Conference, London.
  • Cleary, T. and Akister, J. 2013. Using Volunteers in Child Protection: the implications for social work. Children and Childhoods Conference, UCS, Suffolk.
  • Akister, J. and O’Brien, N. 2013.The Role of Volunteers in Home Based Child Protection: Impact on the mental health of family members. Children and Childhoods Conference, UCS, Suffolk.
  • Akister, J, 2014. Measuring Impact or Are you getting what you want from CPD? SWAN.
  • Akister, J., 2014. Do 'activity' projects help vulnerable young people manage the transition from primary to secondary education?’ Children’s World Conference, Aberystwyth.

Media experience

28.11.11 Interview Radio Cambridgeshire re: CSV findings

15.12.11 Interview Radio Essex re: David Cameron’s proposals for ‘Troubled Families’.

22.5.14 Interview Radio Cambridgeshire re: NEET’s in Fenland project