Nora Duckett

Senior Lecturer in Social Work

Faculty:Faculty of Health, Social Care & Education

Department:School of Education & Social Care

Location: Chelmsford

Areas of Expertise: Education and teaching

Nora is a social work senior lecturer with varied areas of expertise including social work child protection, children running away, sexual exploitation, youth homelessness.

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I have more than 18 years practice experience in a variety of social work settings and 12 years teaching and learning experience at Higher Education level.   I have worked with different social work service user groups although have concentrated on working with and developing practice to improve services and the lives of children and families. I have experience managing a Central Government (UK) funded strategy project which aimed to strengthen and co-ordinate cross borough services for children who run away from care and home.  I have organised and presented at local, national and international conferences and co-authored two editions of a child protection textbook, which is used as a core text on social work courses throughout England. I have contributed to a 3-year research project looking at life trajectories of young homeless people in 4 countries ( and I have completed 2 years doctorate level study focusing on developing understandings of professional dangerousness in child protection social work education and practice. 

Collectively these experiences have resulted in a breadth and depth of knowledge and skill, as well as a firm commitment to social work values and achieving social justice for students and children and adults who use social work and social care services. See this link to the global definition of social work: 

Research interests

  • Understanding better ways to protect children from harm and abuse
  • Professional dangerousness
  • Children running away
  • Sexual exploitation
  • Youth homelessness

Areas of research supervision

  • Social Work Child Protection


  • Lead at ARU Chelmsford, Essex for Assessed Readiness for Direct Practice and Skills Development Days for the undergraduate and post graduate programmes
  • Tutor for Children and Families and Communication Skills and Partnership Working modules
  • Dissertation/Major Project supervisor for BA and MA Students


  • PhD (candidate)
  • MA in Education - London Metropolitan University
  • PG Cert Teaching and Learning - London Metropolitan University
  • PG Cert Systems Approaches to Work with Families and Organisations - Tavistock Centre and University of East London
  • Advanced Diploma in Social Work Practice Teaching with Practice Teaching
  • Award - Middlesex University
  • PG Cert Using Art and Play in Therapeutic Work with Children - University of Roehampton
  • Diploma in Social Work - University of Bath
  • BSc (Hons) Sociology and Social Work - University of Bath

Memberships, editorial boards

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  • British Educational Research Association (BERA)
  • Higher Education Academy (HEA)
  • Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)
  • British Association of Social Workers (BASW)
  • Social Work Action Network (SWAN)

Research grants, consultancy, knowledge exchange

Co-researcher with Dr Joan Smith for the European Commission. Combating Social Exclusion among Young Homeless Populations (CSEYHP) (2008 -2011).

Co–author with Ecotec Research and Consulting for the Government Office for London (GOL) A report on the young runaways situation in London (2010).

Co–author with Dr Sinclair Coward for the London Borough of Islington An evaluation of LB Islington’s Intensive Community Support Packages (2008).

Consultant for the London Borough of Islington’s eligibility criteria for children with disabilities (2006).

Selected recent publications

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Davies, L. and Duckett, N. (2016) Proactive Child Protection and Social Work. London: Sage

Smith, J., Duckett, N. and Menezes, F. (2015) ‘Running to the Future: Youth inequalities, homelessness and Points of reinsertion’ in A Kamp and A Kelly Critical Youth Studies in the 21st Century.  Leiden, NL: Brill Books

Duckett, N. (2010) Testing Early Intervention Models report. Work Package 10. Cities Institute, London Metropolitan University, UK

Smith, J. and Duckett, N. (2009) Thematic Report 3: Capabilities and resiliencies among homeless youth populations

Recent presentations and conferences

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EU Commission (2011) Evidence-based policy conference - youth and social inclusion. ‘Overcoming Biographical Disadvantages Looking back and moving forward: What can be learned from listening to homeless young people?’ DG Research and Innovation Belgium: EU Commission

Media experience

Untitled PageConsultant to BBC1 Real Story – a drama documentary looking at how one sexually exploited and vulnerable teenager was failed by a system meant to protect her and the lessons that must be learnt from her story.  Broadcast on Tue 29 Aug 2006