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Soc. Sci., Volume 3, Issue 3 (September 2014), Pages 308-605

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Research

Jump to: Review

Open AccessArticle Epilogue: The Machinery of Urban Resilience
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 308-313; doi:10.3390/socsci3030308
Received: 16 May 2014 / Revised: 18 June 2014 / Accepted: 23 June 2014 / Published: 26 June 2014
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Abstract
Cities are increasingly being recognized as sites of resilience, or as centres of life that will have to become more resilient in a world of intensifying hazard and risk. The literature on urban resilience tends to emphasize either the qualities of human cooperation
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Cities are increasingly being recognized as sites of resilience, or as centres of life that will have to become more resilient in a world of intensifying hazard and risk. The literature on urban resilience tends to emphasize either the qualities of human cooperation and solidarity or those of the city’s intelligence capabilities—human or technological. This paper focuses, instead, on the city’s supply networks, arguing that the “machinic” qualities of mass provisioning and the flexibilities capacity of the city’s infrastructures may be key to the capacity of a city to mitigate against, or bounce back from, adversity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Constructing Resilience, Negotiating Vulnerability)
Open AccessArticle Comparing Pedophile Activity in Different P2P Systems
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 314-325; doi:10.3390/socsci3030314
Received: 19 March 2014 / Revised: 15 May 2014 / Accepted: 16 May 2014 / Published: 1 July 2014
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Abstract
Peer-to-peer (P2P) systems are widely used to exchange content over the Internet. Knowledge of pedophile activity in such networks remains limited, despite having important social consequences. Moreover, though there are different P2P systems in use, previous academic works on this topic focused on
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Peer-to-peer (P2P) systems are widely used to exchange content over the Internet. Knowledge of pedophile activity in such networks remains limited, despite having important social consequences. Moreover, though there are different P2P systems in use, previous academic works on this topic focused on one system at a time and their results are not directly comparable. We design a methodology for comparing KAD and eDonkey, two P2P systems among the most prominent ones and with different anonymity levels. We monitor two eDonkey servers and the KAD network during several days and record hundreds of thousands of keyword-based queries. We detect pedophile-related queries with a previously validated tool and we propose, for the first time, a large-scale comparison of pedophile activity in two different P2P systems. We conclude that there are significantly fewer pedophile queries in KAD than in eDonkey (approximately 0.09% vs. 0.25%). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available
Open AccessArticle Vulnerable Family Meetings: A Way of Promoting Team Working in GPs’ Everyday Responses to Child Maltreatment?
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 341-358; doi:10.3390/socsci3030341
Received: 27 June 2014 / Revised: 21 July 2014 / Accepted: 25 July 2014 / Published: 4 August 2014
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Abstract
This study uses observations of team meetings and interviews with 17 primary care professionals in four GP practices in England to generate hypotheses about how “vulnerable family” team meetings might support responses by GPs to maltreatment-related concerns and joint working with other professionals.
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This study uses observations of team meetings and interviews with 17 primary care professionals in four GP practices in England to generate hypotheses about how “vulnerable family” team meetings might support responses by GPs to maltreatment-related concerns and joint working with other professionals. These meetings are also called “safeguarding meetings”. The study found that vulnerable family meetings were used as a way of monitoring children or young people and their families and supporting risk assessment by information gathering. Four factors facilitated the meetings: meaningful information flow into the meetings from other agencies, systematic ways of identifying cases for discussion, limiting attendance to core members of the primary care team and locating the meeting as part of routine clinical practice. Our results generate hypotheses about a model of care that can be tested for effectiveness in terms of service measures, child and family outcomes, and as a potential mechanism for other professionals to engage and support GPs in their everyday responses to vulnerable and maltreated children. The potential for adverse as well as beneficial effects should be considered from involving professionals outside the core primary care team (e.g., police, children’s social care, education and mental health services). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available
Open AccessArticle Implementing a Mobile Social Media Framework for Designing Creative Pedagogies
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 359-377; doi:10.3390/socsci3030359
Received: 29 April 2014 / Revised: 3 July 2014 / Accepted: 1 August 2014 / Published: 7 August 2014
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Abstract
The rise of mobile social media provides unique opportunities for new and creative pedagogies. Pedagogical change requires a catalyst, and we argue that mobile social media can be utilized as such a catalyst. However, the mobile learning literature is dominated by case studies
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The rise of mobile social media provides unique opportunities for new and creative pedagogies. Pedagogical change requires a catalyst, and we argue that mobile social media can be utilized as such a catalyst. However, the mobile learning literature is dominated by case studies that retrofit traditional pedagogical strategies and pre-existing course activities onto mobile devices and social media. From our experiences of designing and implementing a series of mobile social media projects, the authors have developed a mobile social media framework for creative pedagogies. We illustrate the implementation of our mobile social media framework within the development of a new media minor (an elective set of four courses) that explicitly integrates the unique technical and pedagogical affordances of mobile social media, with a focus upon student-generated content and student-determined learning (heutagogy). We argue that our mobile social media framework is potentially transferable to a range of educational contexts, providing a simple design framework for new pedagogies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Media and Social Learning)
Open AccessArticle On the Design of Social Media for Learning
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 378-393; doi:10.3390/socsci3030378
Received: 9 May 2014 / Revised: 22 July 2014 / Accepted: 31 July 2014 / Published: 8 August 2014
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Abstract
This paper presents two conceptual models that we have developed for understanding ways that social media can support learning. One model relates to the “social” aspect of social media, describing the different ways that people can learn with and from each other, in
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This paper presents two conceptual models that we have developed for understanding ways that social media can support learning. One model relates to the “social” aspect of social media, describing the different ways that people can learn with and from each other, in one or more of three social forms: groups, networks and sets. The other model relates to the ‘media’ side of social media, describing how technologies are constructed and the roles that people play in creating and enacting them, treating them in terms of softness and hardness. The two models are complementary: neither provides a complete picture but, in combination, they help to explain how and why different uses of social media may succeed or fail and, as importantly, are intended to help us design learning activities that make most effective use of the technologies. We offer some suggestions as to how media used to support different social forms can be softened and hardened for different kinds of learning applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Media and Social Learning)
Open AccessArticle The Relationship between “Protection of” and “Violence Against” Infants and Young Children: The U.S. Experience, 1940–2005
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 394-403; doi:10.3390/socsci3030394
Received: 6 June 2014 / Revised: 24 July 2014 / Accepted: 5 August 2014 / Published: 12 August 2014
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Abstract
Between 1940 and 2005, in the United States, the rate of unnatural death declined about 75 percent in infant and young child boys and girls; a remarkable indicator of successful child protection. During this same period, the rate of reported homicide in infant
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Between 1940 and 2005, in the United States, the rate of unnatural death declined about 75 percent in infant and young child boys and girls; a remarkable indicator of successful child protection. During this same period, the rate of reported homicide in infant boys increased 64.0 percent, in infant girls increased 43.5 percent, in young child boys increased 333.3 percent, and in young child girls increased 300.0 percent, a dismal and disturbing indicator of failed child protection. Can these simultaneously encouraging and discouraging observations be reconciled? The four categories of unnatural death, homicide, suicide, motor vehicle accident (MVA), and non-MVA, are mutually exclusive classifications. Correlations between the four categories of unnatural death among U.S. men and woman in all age groups for the years 1940 through 2005 were calculated. A negative correlation between homicide and non-MVA death rates was shown for all age groups, encompassing the entire human lifespan, in both genders. This consistently observed negative correlation was only observed between homicide and non-MVA death rates, and was not demonstrated between other causes of unnatural deaths. Moreover, this negative correlation was strongest (less than −0.7) in infants and young children. These observations are consistent with the suggestion that as the rate of unnatural death in infants and young children dramatically declined, society gave greater scrutiny to those fewer occurring unnatural deaths and demonstrated an increasing propensity to assign blame for those fewer deaths. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available
Open AccessArticle “Under His Spell”: Victims’ Perspectives of Being Groomed Online
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 404-426; doi:10.3390/socsci3030404
Received: 3 April 2014 / Revised: 18 June 2014 / Accepted: 1 August 2014 / Published: 12 August 2014
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Abstract
The aim of this paper is to highlight key themes within the process of online grooming from the victim’s perspective. Eight adolescents who experienced online grooming were interviewed and data were analysed using Thematic Analysis. It was found that participants, who had been
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The aim of this paper is to highlight key themes within the process of online grooming from the victim’s perspective. Eight adolescents who experienced online grooming were interviewed and data were analysed using Thematic Analysis. It was found that participants, who had been both sexually abused online and/or offline, were subjected to a range of grooming experiences. Consistent grooming themes within this sample included: manipulation; deception; regular/intense contact; secrecy; sexualisation; kindness and flattery; erratic temperament and nastiness; and simultaneous grooming of those close to the victim. These themes are similar to those identified by the literature surrounding grooming offline. Analysis demonstrated that once a participant was ‘enmeshed’ in the relationship with the offender, they were more likely to endure negative feelings associated with the grooming, than if the victim was not ‘enmeshed’. This paper supports the notion that grooming is a varied and non-linear process. Recommendations are made for practitioners, parents and carers, as well as suggestions for primary preventative education. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available
Open AccessArticle Technology-Based Innovations in Child Maltreatment Prevention Programs: Examples from SafeCare®
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 427-440; doi:10.3390/socsci3030427
Received: 14 July 2014 / Revised: 9 August 2014 / Accepted: 11 August 2014 / Published: 15 August 2014
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Abstract
Each year, hundreds of thousands of children in the U.S. are victims of child maltreatment. Experts recommend behavioral, skill-based parent training programs as a strategy for the prevention of child abuse and neglect. These programs can be enhanced using innovative technology strategies. This
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Each year, hundreds of thousands of children in the U.S. are victims of child maltreatment. Experts recommend behavioral, skill-based parent training programs as a strategy for the prevention of child abuse and neglect. These programs can be enhanced using innovative technology strategies. This paper presents a brief history of the use of technology in SafeCare®, a home visiting program shown to prevent child neglect and physical abuse, and highlights current work that takes a technology-based hybrid approach to SafeCare delivery. With this unique approach, the provider brings a tablet computer to each session, and the parent interacts with the software to receive psychoeducation and modeling of target skills. The provider and parent then work together to practice the targeted skills until mastery is achieved. Initial findings from ongoing research of both of these strategies indicate that they show potential for improving engagement and use of positive parenting skills for parents and ease of implementation for providers. Future directions for technology enhancements in SafeCare are also presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available
Open AccessArticle Developing Child-Centered Social Policies: When Professionalism Takes Over
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 441-459; doi:10.3390/socsci3030441
Received: 1 July 2014 / Revised: 3 August 2014 / Accepted: 11 August 2014 / Published: 19 August 2014
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Abstract
No nation today can be understood as being fully child-centered, but many are pursuing social policies heavily favoring children. The emphasis on individual rights and the growth of scientific knowledge underpinning many of these policies have led to the improvement of the lives
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No nation today can be understood as being fully child-centered, but many are pursuing social policies heavily favoring children. The emphasis on individual rights and the growth of scientific knowledge underpinning many of these policies have led to the improvement of the lives of a great many children. Paradoxically, these same knowledge bases informing social policies often produce representations and images of children and their parents that are detrimental for both of these groups. Using Norwegian child welfare policies and practices as examples, I will examine some of the possible pitfalls of child-centered praxis. The key question here is one asking whether the scientific frame central to child welfare professionalism has positioned children and parents as objects rather than subjects in their own lives and, in so doing, required them to live up to standards of life defined for them by experts. A central question will involve exploring the extent to which scientific knowledge has erased political and ethical considerations from the field when assessing social problems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available
Open AccessArticle Mandatory Reporting Laws and Identification of Child Abuse and Neglect: Consideration of Differential Maltreatment Types, and a Cross-Jurisdictional Analysis of Child Sexual Abuse Reports
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 460-482; doi:10.3390/socsci3030460
Received: 2 July 2014 / Revised: 12 July 2014 / Accepted: 16 July 2014 / Published: 20 August 2014
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Abstract
Mandatory reporting laws have been created in many jurisdictions as a way of identifying cases of severe child maltreatment on the basis that cases will otherwise remain hidden. These laws usually apply to all four maltreatment types. Other jurisdictions have narrower approaches supplemented
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Mandatory reporting laws have been created in many jurisdictions as a way of identifying cases of severe child maltreatment on the basis that cases will otherwise remain hidden. These laws usually apply to all four maltreatment types. Other jurisdictions have narrower approaches supplemented by differential response systems, and others still have chosen not to enact mandatory reporting laws for any type of maltreatment. In scholarly research and normative debates about mandatory reporting laws and their effects, the four major forms of child maltreatment—physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, and neglect—are often grouped together as if they are homogenous in nature, cause, and consequence. Yet, the heterogeneity of maltreatment types, and different reporting practices regarding them, must be acknowledged and explored when considering what legal and policy frameworks are best suited to identify and respond to cases. A related question which is often conjectured upon but seldom empirically explored, is whether reporting laws make a difference in case identification. This article first considers different types of child abuse and neglect, before exploring the nature and operation of mandatory reporting laws in different contexts. It then posits a differentiation thesis, arguing that different patterns of reporting between both reporter groups and maltreatment types must be acknowledged and analysed, and should inform discussions and assessments of optimal approaches in law, policy and practice. Finally, to contribute to the evidence base required to inform discussion, this article conducts an empirical cross-jurisdictional comparison of the reporting and identification of child sexual abuse in jurisdictions with and without mandatory reporting, and concludes that mandatory reporting laws appear to be associated with better case identification. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available
Open AccessArticle Urgent Protection versus Chronic Need: Clarifying the Dual Mandate of Child Welfare Services across Canada
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 483-498; doi:10.3390/socsci3030483
Received: 1 July 2014 / Revised: 12 August 2014 / Accepted: 13 August 2014 / Published: 26 August 2014
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Abstract
This study analyzed data from the 1998, 2003 and 2008 Canadian Incidence Study of reported child abuse and neglect (CIS) and compared the profile of children who were reported for an urgent protection investigation versus any other investigation or assessment. As a proportion
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This study analyzed data from the 1998, 2003 and 2008 Canadian Incidence Study of reported child abuse and neglect (CIS) and compared the profile of children who were reported for an urgent protection investigation versus any other investigation or assessment. As a proportion of all investigations, urgent protection cases have dropped from 28% of all investigations in 1998, to 19% in 2003, to 15% in 2008. Results from the CIS-2008 analysis revealed that 7% of cases involved neglect of a child under four, 4% of cases involved sexual abuse, 2% of cases involved physical abuse of a child under four and 1% of cases involved children who had sustained severe enough physical harm that medical treatment was required. The other 85% of cases of investigated maltreatment involved situations where concerns appear to focus less on immediate safety and more on the long-term effects of a range of family related problems. These findings underscore the importance of considering the dual mandate of child welfare mandates across Canada: intervening to assure the urgent protection and safety of the child versus intervening to promote the development and well-being of the child. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available
Open AccessArticle Gathering the Voices: Disseminating the Message of the Holocaust for the Digital Generation by Applying an Interdisciplinary Approach
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 499-513; doi:10.3390/socsci3030499
Received: 29 April 2014 / Revised: 19 June 2014 / Accepted: 13 August 2014 / Published: 27 August 2014
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Abstract
The aim of the Gathering the Voices project is to gather testimonies from Holocaust survivors who have made their home in Scotland and to make these testimonies available on the World Wide Web. The project commenced in 2012, and a key outcome of
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The aim of the Gathering the Voices project is to gather testimonies from Holocaust survivors who have made their home in Scotland and to make these testimonies available on the World Wide Web. The project commenced in 2012, and a key outcome of the project is to educate current and future generations about the resilience of these survivors. Volunteers from the Jewish community are collaborating with staff and undergraduate students in Glasgow Caledonian University in developing innovative approaches to engage with school children. These multimedia approaches are essential, as future generations will be unable to interact in person with Holocaust survivors. By students being active participants in the project, they will learn more about the Holocaust and recognize the relevance of these testimonies in today’s society. Although some of the survivors have been interviewed about their journeys in fleeing from the Nazi atrocities, for all of the interviewees, this is the first time that they have been asked about their lives once they arrived in the United Kingdom. The interviews have also focused on citizenship and integration into society. The project is not yet completed, and an evaluation will be taking place to measure the effectiveness of the project in communicating its message to the public. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Media and Social Learning)
Open AccessArticle The Voice of the Child in Child Protection: Whose Voice?
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 514-526; doi:10.3390/socsci3030514
Received: 29 June 2014 / Revised: 25 August 2014 / Accepted: 25 August 2014 / Published: 2 September 2014
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Abstract
Article 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child outlines the rights of children to express their views in decisions affecting their lives. There is further evidence to support the positive benefits for children who are afforded this right.
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Article 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child outlines the rights of children to express their views in decisions affecting their lives. There is further evidence to support the positive benefits for children who are afforded this right. However, evidence shows that despite legislative and policy frameworks to support this, repeated messages from inquiry reports highlight failures to do so. This paper draws upon research undertaken in Scotland but the findings of the study are relevant across the UK and beyond. Child protection documentation including reports and case conference minutes were analysed to assess to what extent the child’s views were presented to, and considered in, decision making forums. In particular the study considers how the child’s views and wishes are represented in writing, and highlights the ways which professionals filtered and interpreted the child’s view rather than presented it in its pure form. Messages have emerged identifying a need for workers to be clear about the factors which influence their practice with children. These include the value they place on children’s participation, the skills and confidence needed to engage children with complex needs and the impact of competing tensions. One example of such a tension is that between the needs of busy workers, and those of children who are potentially involved in a range of decision making processes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available
Open AccessArticle Coping with a Self-Induced Shock: The Heterarchic Organization of the London Olympic Games 2012
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 527-548; doi:10.3390/socsci3030527
Received: 4 May 2014 / Revised: 12 August 2014 / Accepted: 26 August 2014 / Published: 11 September 2014
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Abstract
This paper starts from the assumption of a structural analogy between mega-events and large-scale disasters. Both imply forceful interruptions of everyday routines, and both involve imperatives for imminent action. Similar to the immovable deadline of an opening ceremony, a looming natural disaster triggers
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This paper starts from the assumption of a structural analogy between mega-events and large-scale disasters. Both imply forceful interruptions of everyday routines, and both involve imperatives for imminent action. Similar to the immovable deadline of an opening ceremony, a looming natural disaster triggers a complex set of precautions and preparations to cope with the inescapable forthcoming shock. In the case of mega-events, of course, this shock is self-induced. In fact, cities fiercely compete to host mega-events. In the face of the daunting challenges of hosting a mega-event—the immovable timeframe, the rigorous standards set by regulatory bodies, and the exceptional public visibility—the authorities and organizations in charge traditionally have resorted to strategies of a strict adaptation to the conditions imposed on them. Aligning all available resources and capabilities to match the foreseeable demands, however, undermines the adaptability to cope with unpredictable perturbations. This paper seeks to explore the strategies and practices to attain adaptability during the preparation, staging and implementation of legacy plans of a mega-event with an evidentially noteworthy record: the London Olympic Games 2012. The paper seeks to demonstrate that the project ecology in charge managed to enhance adaptability by implementing three key features of heterarchy: ambiguity, redundancy and loose coupling. By leveraging the principles of heterarchy, the project ecology was able to draw lessons from previous mega-events and both to anticipate and respond to unforeseen challenges. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Constructing Resilience, Negotiating Vulnerability)
Open AccessArticle Socioeconomic Position and Low Birth Weight: Evaluating Multiple and Alternative Measures Across Race in Michigan
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 549-564; doi:10.3390/socsci3030549
Received: 14 July 2014 / Revised: 29 August 2014 / Accepted: 1 September 2014 / Published: 11 September 2014
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Abstract
In health research, socioeconomic position (SEP) is used to measure the context of social inequality. Studies on low birth weight (LBW) that attempt to capture social inequality have generally used single measures of SEP or have employed conventional SEP measures, such as income
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In health research, socioeconomic position (SEP) is used to measure the context of social inequality. Studies on low birth weight (LBW) that attempt to capture social inequality have generally used single measures of SEP or have employed conventional SEP measures, such as income and education, without regard to how other indicators could influence findings. This study investigates the association between SEP and LBW across blacks and whites using multiple and alternative indicators of SEP. We use a stratified random sample of 13,513 postpartum mothers, obtained from the Michigan Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (2000–2006), and evaluate four SEP measures across race: maternal education, Medicaid before pregnancy, Women, Infants and Children (WIC) enrollment during pregnancy and paternal acknowledgment. Results indicate that associations between SEP and LBW vary depending on the SEP measure used and the racial subpopulation under consideration. To explain and reduce social inequalities in LBW, a more differentiated approach that does not assume equivalence among SEP measures and across racial/ethnic groups should be employed. Full article
Open AccessArticle The Australian Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse: Dreaming of Child Safe Organisations?
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 565-583; doi:10.3390/socsci3030565
Received: 27 June 2014 / Revised: 28 August 2014 / Accepted: 2 September 2014 / Published: 16 September 2014
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Abstract
On 12 November 2012 the then Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced she was recommending to the Governor General the establishment of a Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Following inquiries in Australia and elsewhere much is already known about
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On 12 November 2012 the then Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced she was recommending to the Governor General the establishment of a Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Following inquiries in Australia and elsewhere much is already known about institutional and inter-institutional child protection failures and what is required to address them. That Australia’s national government has pursued another abuse inquiry with terms of reference limited to institution-based (excluding the family) sexual abuse is of interest given the lack of political will to enact previous findings and recommendations. This article examines the background to the Government’s announcement, the Commission’s terms of reference and some of its settings, and literature on the nature of royal commissions across time and place. After the lack of success in implementing the recommendations of previous inquiries into how to better protect Australia’s children, the question is: how will this Royal Commission contribute to Australian child protection and safety? Will the overwhelming public support generated by “truth speaking to power” in calling for this inquiry translate into action? Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available
Open AccessArticle Time is of the Essence: Risk and the Public Law Outline, Judicial Discretion and the Determination of a Child’s Best Interests
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 584-605; doi:10.3390/socsci3030584
Received: 8 April 2014 / Revised: 25 August 2014 / Accepted: 29 August 2014 / Published: 23 September 2014
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Abstract
The Children and Families Act 2014 has introduced a 26-week timeline for Children Act 1989 care and supervision court cases. This article discusses the risks and possible ramifications for children and parents of this measure, which halves the average length of care proceedings.
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The Children and Families Act 2014 has introduced a 26-week timeline for Children Act 1989 care and supervision court cases. This article discusses the risks and possible ramifications for children and parents of this measure, which halves the average length of care proceedings. This is to be set against evidence that faster resolution of children’s cases is possible without prejudicing the quality of court decision making; however, careful monitoring is indicated to ensure that child welfare is at the forefront in the decision making process and the individual rights of all concerned are protected. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available

Review

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Open AccessReview Child Protection in Sport: Reflections on Thirty Years of Science and Activism
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(3), 326-340; doi:10.3390/socsci3030326
Received: 28 May 2014 / Revised: 11 July 2014 / Accepted: 14 July 2014 / Published: 24 July 2014
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Abstract
This paper examines the responses of state and third sector agencies to the emergence of child abuse in sport since the mid-1980s. As with other social institutions such as the church, health and education, sport has both initiated its own child protection interventions
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This paper examines the responses of state and third sector agencies to the emergence of child abuse in sport since the mid-1980s. As with other social institutions such as the church, health and education, sport has both initiated its own child protection interventions and also responded to wider social and political influences. Sport has exemplified many of the changes identified in the brief for this special issue, such as the widening of definitional focus, increasing geographic scope and broadening of concerns to encompass health and welfare. The child protection agenda in sport was initially driven by sexual abuse scandals and has since embraced a range of additional harms to children, such as physical and psychological abuse, neglect and damaging hazing (initiation) rituals. Whereas in the 1990s, only a few sport organisations acknowledged or addressed child abuse and protection (notably, UK, Canada and Australia), there has since been rapid growth in interest in the issue internationally, with many agencies now taking an active role in prevention work. These agencies adopt different foci related to their overall mission and may be characterised broadly as sport-specific (focussing on abuse prevention in sport), children’s rights organisations (focussing on child protection around sport events) and humanitarian organisations (focussing on child development and protection through sport). This article examines how these differences in organisational focus lead to very different child protection approaches and “solutions”. It critiques the scientific approaches used thus far to inform activism and policy changes and ends by considering future challenges for athlete safeguarding and welfare. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Developments in Child Protection) Print Edition available

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