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Dr Chloe O'Donnell

Dr Chloe O'Donnell

Research Associate, CASCADE

02922 510936
0.01, 12 Museum Place, Cathays, Cardiff, CF10 3BG


My main research interests are around marginalised children and young people, focusing on looked-after children and young people for both my master and doctoral studies. My master’s degree looked broadly at their educational trajectories, whilst my PhD focused specifically on their PE (Physical Education) and school sport experiences. I have a particular interest in promoting children and young people’s voice within research and have presented at conferences internationally on this subject. I have also contributed to a national research project commissioned by the third sector that creatively sought looked-after young people’s perceptions of being in care.

Since being at CASCADE, I have worked on various research projects relating to children’s social care as part of the work commissioned by the DfE (Department for Education) for the What Works Centre for Children’s Social Care. Specifically, these projects sought to understand what interventions work, for whom and under what circumstances to safely reduce the number of children entering care and/or to increase the number of children reunified with their family. Such interventions include: Signs of Safety, family drug and alcohol courts, and shared decision-making meetings. Currently, I am working on a longitudinal research project for the DfE to evaluate the longer-term outcomes of two fast-track child and family social work programmes.


2018: PhD. ‘Exploring the PE and school sport experiences of looked-after children and young people’. Loughborough University.

2014: MSc (by Research). ‘Looked-after children and educational trajectories’. University of Gloucestershire.

2012: BSc (Hons) First Class. Sports Education and Sports Development. University of Gloucestershire.

Honours and awards

2012: ‘Alan Patrick Memorial Award’ for the best academic performance within the School of Sport and Exercise, University of Gloucestershire.

2012: ‘Best Overall Performance on an Undergraduate Programme’ Award, University of Gloucestershire.

Academic positions

2019- present: Research Associate, CASCADE

2018: Research Assistant, CASCADE


My main research interests are around care-experienced children and young people and those at risk of entering care.