Skip to main content
Dr Alyson Rees PhD, CQSW

Dr Alyson Rees

PhD, CQSW

Reader

School of Social Sciences

Email
reesa1@cardiff.ac.uk
Telephone
+44(0) 29 2087 5261
Campuses
2.05, Glamorgan Building, King Edward VII Avenue, Cardiff, CF10 3WA
Users
Available for postgraduate supervision

Overview

I am a Reader in School of Social Sciences. I am a Social Work lecturer and researcher. Having been a practitoner for many years (as a probation offiver and social worker) this has influenced both my interests and approach to research. My interests are in child and family social work and criminal justice, particularly fostering, adoption, domestic abuse, women in prison and child neglect. I was asked to give evidence to All Wales Parliamentary Committee on the basis of a  study I had undertaken on children visiting a mother in prison, from which I made a short film https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5nuD3VsxGhA.

 I particularly favour a sociological approach to child and family research. I have published widely and a paper on adult safeguarding in Wales, published in the Journal of Adult Protection, was awarded the Emerald Literati 'Outstanding Paper' award in 2020. 

I am an Assistant Director  of CASCADE Children's Social Care Research and Development Centre and I am responsible for ExChange, the research dissemination arm of the centre. I chair the Equality and Diversity Committee for the School of Social Sciences. I sit on the People and Envirnment Committee. 

I teach on the MA in Social Work and convene the post qualifying Enabling Practice module. I am a tutor on the MA in Social Work.

I  manage the international travel programme for the MA in Social Work.

I am a registered Social Worker with Social Care  Wales.

I welcome PhD applications to work on topics related to social work.

Professional memberships

  • Registered Social Worker (Social Care Wales)
  • Member of British Association of Social Workers
  • Member of European Social Work Research Association

Academic positions

  • 2000-2005: Tutor, Cardiff
  • 2005-2010: Lecturer, Cardiff
  • 2010-2019: Senior Lecturer, Cardiff
  • 2019- present: Reader, Cardiff

Speaking engagements

  • Invited speaker, Queens Belfast (2017)
  •  European Social Work Research Association conference,  Arlborg (2017 )
  • European Scientific Association on Residential and FamilyCare for Children, Porto (2018)
  • Video Interactive Guidance Conference, Cornwall  (2018)
  • European Social Work Research Association conference x 4, Edinburgh (2018)
  •  Make a Stand Cymru,  Welsh Women’s Aid ( 2019)

  • Kempe Centre, Call to Action, Leaving Care in COVID (2020)

  • Festival of Social Sciences, Who Cares for those leaving care (2020)
  • INTRAC, International Research `network for children leaving care (2021)

Committees and reviewing

  • Chair of Practice Assessment Panel MA in Social Work
  • Chair of equality and diversity committee, School of Social Sciences
  • Member of JSWEC Research Committee
  • Member of End Youth Homelessness, Cymru advisory committee
  • Editoral Board member for British Journal of Social Work
  • Editorial Board member for Journal of Children and Society
  • Board Member  of UCAN (charity for visually impaired young people)
  • Chair of Policy Board for Voices from Care, Cymru
  • Reviewer for  journals in social work and sociology 
  • Previous member of JSWEC International committe
  • Past member of School of Social Sciences ethics committee
  • Past HEI member of Care Council for Wales.

Biography

I am a registered Social Worker and before becoming an academic I worked as a practioner for many years. I initially started working in a night shelter in London for ex-offenders and those with mental health difficulties. I then qualified to become a Social Worker and was sponsored  by the Home Office to work as a probation officer. I worked as a probation officer  for 16 years in Gwent undertaking a range of roles including working in the youth offending team and as  Crown Court Liasion Officer. I   have also worked for Barnados in Ely, Cardiff undertaking commmunity work and running girls groups. Most latterly I worked for the NSPCC working in a domestic violence unit, running groups for male perpetrators, female survivors and children who had witnessed abuse. 

I started teaching at Cardiff University part-time whilst still working for the NSPCC. I completed my PhD in 2009 on successful and effective foster care, taking a whole-family, strengths based and sociological perspective. I particularly favour sociological approaches as applied to social care and social work. I have undertaken a wide range of research  including studies focusing on care expperienced children and criminal justice. Most of my research centres on social justice and gender.

I have taught on the MA  Social Work programme since 2000 when I first took up a post at Cardiff University. I am currently reponsible for student placements and I am an assistant director of CASCADE research centre. I am repsonsible for ExChange, the knowledge exchange network and research dissemination arm of CASCADE. I  also responsible for participation of experts by experience in CASCADE and on the MA Social Work. I chair the Eqiality and Diversity Committee for the School of Social Sciences.

Professional memberships

  • Registered Social Worker (Social Care Wales)
  • Member of British Association of Social Workers
  • Member of European Social Work Research Association

Academic positions

  • 2000-2005: Tutor, Cardiff
  • 2005-2010: Lecturer, Cardiff
  • 2010-2019: Senior Lecturer, Cardiff
  • 2019- present: Reader, Cardiff

Speaking engagements

  • Invited speaker, Queens Belfast (2017)
  •  European Social Work Research Association conference,  Arlborg (2017 )
  • European Scientific Association on Residential and FamilyCare for Children, Porto (2018)
  • Video Interactive Guidance Conference, Cornwall  (2018)
  • European Social Work Research Association conference x 4, Edinburgh (2018)
  •  Make a Stand Cymru,  Welsh Women’s Aid ( 2019)

  • Kempe Centre, Call to Action, Leaving Care in COVID (2020)

  • Festival of Social Sciences, Who Cares for those leaving care (2020)
  • INTRAC, International Research `network for children leaving care (2021)

Committees and reviewing

  • Chair of Practice Assessment Panel MA in Social Work
  • Chair of equality and diversity committee, School of Social Sciences
  • Member of JSWEC Research Committee
  • Member of End Youth Homelessness, Cymru advisory committee
  • Editoral Board member for British Journal of Social Work
  • Editorial Board member for Journal of Children and Society
  • Board Member  of UCAN (charity for visually impaired young people)
  • Chair of Policy Board for Voices from Care, Cymru
  • Reviewer for  journals in social work and sociology 
  • Previous member of JSWEC International committe
  • Past member of School of Social Sciences ethics committee
  • Past HEI member of Care Council for Wales.

Academic positions

2000-2004 Professional Tutor, Cardiff University

2004-2012 Lecturer, Cardiff University

2012-2019 Senior Lecturer, Cardiff University

2019- Reader, Cardiff University

Committees and reviewing

Publications

2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2005

2004

Teaching

I teach on the MA in Social Work, teaching 'Introduction to Social Work Practice','Inroduction to Social Work Theory', 'Introduction to Children, Youth and Families', 'Gender' and 'Domestic Abuse'.

I convene and teach on the post qualifying module 'Enabling Practice' for practice assessors.

I am responsible for Practice Liaison and chair the MA in Social Work Practice Assessment Panels.

I currently supervise a number of MA, Professional Doctorate and PhD students.  I am currently supervising doctoral projects relating to Adoption,  Suicide, Working with Adults and a Stengths based perspective, Foster Care, Children Looked After and Education, Children Looked After and Mental Health, Practice Education in Wales, Experience of Black Mothers in Prison, Child Neglect, Assylum Seeker Families in Wales, Domestic Abuse and Family Care.

I have been involved in research in a  range of areas relating to children, young people and  families. I have undertaken projects involving foster care, child neglect, child sexual abuse, domestic abuse, women in prison, children visitng mothers in prison, video interactive guidance, complex families, integrated family support and wheel chair users.I have undertaken three research studies  of death reveiws in Wales.

Currently I am involved in several research projects:

  • Young people leaving care theough COVID-19. 
  • Review of Adult  Practice Reviews undertaken in Wales 2017-2020.
  • An evaluation of pan Wales Fostering Wellbeing programme.
  • An evaluation of a social worker programme based in two women's priosns. 
  • County lines- an exploration of practice responses to child criminal explotation and development of a tool kit.

I will start a project reveiwing Child Practice Reviews undertakn in Wales later in 2021.

I have experience of  range of research methods, in particular qualitative and participatory methods with young people.

I am Assistant Director of CASCADE Children's Social Care Research and Development Centre. I am repsonsibly for ExChange, the research dissemination arm of CADCADE. 

Supervision

I am currently supervising a range of doctoral students and welcome requests for PhD supervision. I have previously supervised candidates in a  range of areas and my interests include: 

  • Foster care
  • Animal- human relationships
  • The ethic of care
  • Adoption
  • Domestic abuse
  • Child negelct
  • Suicide
  • Particpation
  • Working with male perpetrators
  • Child neglect
  • Gender
  • Women in prison
  • I currently supervise the following doctoral candidates
  • Rosie Moore
  • Sarah Farragher
  • Bridget Handley
  • Alison Prowle
  • Imran Mohamed
  • Andrea Cooper
  • Monica Thomas
  • Gemma Alnatt

Past projects

Marja Kempanaar - Adoption support

Martin Price- Assessing child neglect

Marion Russell- The role of the consultant social worker

Clive Diaz- Children's particpation

Phil Smith- An exploration of the pupil referral unit

Claire Palmer- Adoption of older children.

External profiles