• Room 01.022 - Sociology and Social Work

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

- Adoption, kinship care, leaving care
- Parenting capacity


Research activity per year

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Personal profile

Research Interests

 My career as a social work practitioner and academic has focused on the needs and rights of children, young people and their families experiencing adversity. I worked for eleven years as a social worker and senior social worker in statutory child welfare practice, with expertise in child protection, family support, foster care, adoption and permanence planning. Since employment in 2010 as a social work lecturer, I have continued to develop teaching and research that is focused on dedicated to children and young people in state care and adopted from care, and to supporting the families of children in need.

I am involved in research in relation to parenting, family support, children in alternative care, and the experience of family life in foster care, kinship foster care and adoption, with expertise in interpretative qualitative research methods. I work alongside social workers and child welfare agencies to translate research into innovative practice solutions to benefit children and families. I am especially interested in children’s experiences of alternative care internationally and am involved in research partnerships in South Africa and Australia.

I am a Fellow of the Centre for Effectiveness and Social Innovation at. I contribute to ongoing knowledge exchange between the research and child welfare practice communities, on a national and European level, as a core member of: EuroFam-Net, the Pan-European Family Support Research Network; the NI Inter-Agency Child Care Legal Issues Group; the advisory group of Adoption UK (NI), and the CoramBAAF research group advisory committee.

I co-ordinate the social work with children and families module for the Bachelor in Social Work programme, and the enhancing outcomes for children in state care module on the Masters in Applied Social Studies.

I supervise a number of PhD students and welcome proposals in relation to child welfare, adoption, kinship foster care, family life, or parenting.



Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


Dive into the research topics where Mandi MacDonald is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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