UK – London – More research participants wanted.and some great new fatherhood books and reports

More research participants wanted…and some great new fatherhood books and reports


More research participants wanted…

Fathering across three generation Irish, Polish and White British families (Thomas Coram Research Unit, Institute of Education, University of London)

This ESRC-funded research project is looking for three generation families consisting of a grandfather with a son who also has a son aged 5-18 – for a study which will investigate changing meanings and experiences of fatherhood for three generations in these three cultural groups. The researchers would like to talk to grandfathers, fathers and sons whose families have (a) always lived in the UK; or (b) the father came to the UK from Poland or (c) the grandfather came from Ireland. Although the focus is London and the South East of England, it doesn’t matter if one generation lives in Poland or Ireland. To find out more email Valerie Wigfall or call her on 020 7612 6815; email Violetta Parutis (Polish); or email Ann Mooney or call her on 020 7612 6957.

Stay-at-home dads survey (National Childbirth Trust and Lewisham Council)

This survey looks at what role dads play in nappy changing, bathing, cooking etc and also whether they have considered becoming the main carer. The questionnaire then goes onto asking about what the barriers might be, including economic barriers and the fear of stepping outside stereotypical gender roles. Participants can fill in the survey here or for more information email Marc James, Fathers Outreach Coordinator or call him on 020 8921 2768.

Big Fatherhood Debate ‘Dads and Children’s Services’ surveys (Fatherhood Institute)

We are still looking for (a) dads, mums and (b) managers/practitioners from agencies who work with them, to share their views of how well or badly children’s services engage with fathers. Lots of people have already filled in the surveys – the results of which will feed into our Annual Fatherhood Report, due out next spring…but we want more! Click here to access the surveys.

Could you host a discussion-group on couple relationships? (Newcastle University, for DCSF)

We’ve already asked you about STAGE 2 of this project, which is now looking at stresses face by couples who are currently in a committed relationship and are not thinking of separating. Participants can fill in an online questionnaire or be interviewed on the phone or in person OR discuss the topic in a group. This could make a great topic for discussion in a group that you already run – and the researchers will willingly travel to your location to observe and record the discussion.. To contact the researchers email them here or telephone 0191 222 7963 and talk to Jane, the project administrator.

…And some great new fatherhood books and reports

When Boys Become Parents: adolescent fathers in America is by Mark Kiselica, the leading US expert on young-fathers-in-practice, whose 1995 handbook Multi-cultural Counseling with Teenage Fathers still has a lot to teach us. When Boys Become Parents is full of new insights and wisdom and a great evidence-base and case studies. It’s provided source material for he Fatherhood Institute’s new Invisible Fathers: working with young dads resource pack.

In Fathering through Sport and Leisure edited by Tess Kay (Loughborough University) leading researchers from the fields of sport, leisure and family studies draw on research from across the developed world to examine fathers’ interactions with their children during leisure time. Analysed in relation to social trends and current policy debates, this unique collection examines fathering in a wide range of contexts including: parental expectation and youth sports; fathers and daughters; leisure time and couple time in dual earner families; divorce, fatherhood and leisure.

Intimate Fatherhood: a sociological analysis by Esther Dermott (Bristol University) sets out a new framework for thinking about men’s parenting, exploring our ideas of good fatherhood in relation to time use, finance, emotion, motherhood and policy debates. The book also looks at longstanding conundrums such as the apparent discrepancy between fathers’ acceptance of long hours spent in paid work combined with a preference for involved fathering, with Dermott arguing for recognition of the centrality of the emotional father-child relationship rather than basing father-involvement on time spent in childcare, and contending that the importance of breadwinning has been overstated.

Contemporary Fathering: theory, policy and practice by social work professor Brid Featherstone (Bradford University) keeps its eye on fathers in child protection services and social work while locating fathers, fathering and fatherhood within historical and social landscapes, exploring for instance psychoanalysis, sociology, psychology and contemporary developments in social and welfare policy. Featherstone is also co-author of one of the best books ever to offer practical strategies for working effectively with fathers: Working with Men in Health and Social Care.

Fragmenting Fatherhood: a socio-legal study by law professors Collier & Sheldon provides the first sustained engagement with the way that fatherhood has been understood, constructed and regulated within English law, tracing shifts in legal and broader understandings of what it means to be a ‘father ‘and what rights and obligations should accrue to that status. In thematically linked chapters cutting across substantive areas of law, the book locates fatherhood as a key site of contestation within broader political debates regarding the family and gender equality.

Man Made: Men, masculinities and equality in public policy from the new UK Coalition on Men and Boys (COMAB) draws upon a wide range of domestic and international evidence to provide a unique in-depth picture of the current circumstances of men and boys in the UK. Focusing on the key themes of work, fatherhood, health, education and violence, the report explores the opportunities and risks in involving men and boys in gender equality strategies, how policy and practice can engage with men and boys effectively, and outlines recommendations for reform at all levels. The report is freely downloadable.

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