School of Social and Political Science

Mary Mitchell

Job Title

Lecturer in Social Work

Photo
Mary Mitchell

Room number

2.02

Building (Address)

Chrystal Macmillan Building

Street (Address)

15a George Square

City (Address)

Edinburgh

Country (Address)

UK

Background

A qualified social worker, I have over thirty years professional experience in social work and community work, with a particular emphasis on work with children, young people and families. I have worked extensively in the voluntary, non-government and government sectors in both Australia and Scotland. I have also taught social work, community education and childhood practice at a number of academic institutions. In 2018 I completed my PhD (Social Policy)  ‘Reimagining Family Group Conferencing (FGC) ‘Outcomes’’, which focused on investigating the contribution FGC makes towards outcomes for looked after children at risk of being accommodated, and their families.

My current research interests lie in investigating Family Group Conferencing as a decision-making process. I am particularly interested in looking at issues, such as “who defines outcomes?”, the role of recognition in childcare and protection and young people’s participation in decision making. 

I am currently the Principle Investigator for the evaluation of Scotland's Barnahus: Child's House for Healing (2021-2024).

Winner – 2018 Scottish Graduate School of Social Sciences Impact and Knowledge Exchange Award for “Reimagining Family Group Conferencing ‘outcomes’’.

Teaching

I teach on both the undergraduate and Master in Social Work programmes. My teaching interests include child and family social work, community social work, social work skills and values, community based social work and qualitative research methodology.

PhD Supervision

Lauren Lamberton - New challenges in mental health provision: e-mental health support

Ruibing Sha - Exploring the feelings of foster carers on the departure of children from their care

Hamido Megahead - The transitioning of young Egyptian males in residential care from mixed sex provision to single-sex (male only) provision

Recent Publications:

Mitchell, M., (2021) Chapter 7. A Retrospective Case Study Approach to Studying FGC Outcomes in Annie de Roo and Rob Jagtenberg (eds) Family Group Conferencing Research - Reflections and Ways Forward (forthcoming)

Mitchell, M., (2020) The value of Recognition Theory to Family Group Conferencing and child-care and protection, bcaa207 British Journal of Social Work

Critchley, A. and Mitchell, M., (2020) Can knowledge exchange forge a collaborative pathway to policymaking? A case study example of the Recognition Matters knowledge exchange project.  British Journal of Social Work bcaa220, https://doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcaa220

Mitchell, M.  and Ali, S., (2020) Adaptive Family Group Conferencing practice: keeping families at the heart of decision making during COVID19, Social Work 2020 under Covid-19 Magazine, edition 5

Mitchell. M., (2020) Reimagining child welfare outcomes: Learning from family group conferencing. Child & Family Social Work. vol 25 (2) pp 211-220 https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/cfs.12676

Cree, V., Morrison, F., Mitchell, M. and Gulland, J. (2020) Navigating the gendered academy: women in social work academia. Social Work Education https://doi.org/10.1080/02615479.2020.1715934

Mitchell, M., Tisdall , K., Riddell C., (2018) Learning from FGC: Reimagining approaches and outcomes to child care and protection FGC, Research Briefing Paper: CRFR and Children 1st https://www.children1st.org.uk/media/6738/fgcbriefingpaper.pdf

Mitchell (2018) Reimagining family group conferencing 'outcomes' . The University of Edinburgh (United Kingdom), ProQuest Dissertations Publishing, 2018. (thesis) 13831240. https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/docview/2164133897?pq-origsite=primo

McMellon, C. and Mitchell, M. (2018) ‘Participatory Action Research and Young People’ in Building Research Design in Education: Theoretically informed Advanced Methods, John Ravenscroft and Lorna Hamilton (eds) , Bloomsbury publishing Ltd

McMellon, C. and Mitchell, M. (2016) Reinvigorating young people’s participation in Edinburgh, CRFR Briefing Paper 85

Knowledge Exchange Activities:

Recognition Matters Knowledge Exchange Materials released on 23.6.2020:

Recognition Matters Film - https://youtu.be/wydm54Gk9mI

Azaria's Story - https://youtu.be/NC68ZsmX86M

Briefing Note, June 2020

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1O2mL4v8IozsbSz8dkbm6E9A8KDumsIfs/view?usp=sharing

Heather: - https://youtu.be/QfDcY16ib1M

Nicky: - https://youtu.be/N5Ls1riYksc

Julie: - https://youtu.be/j-6eTLXJI5Y

Young Edinburgh Action and CRFR Knowledge Exchange Project (2016) : A film exploring young people's experiences of being a young researcher 2016

Qualifications

PhD (Social Policy), 2018, The University of Edinburgh

Family Group Conferencing Certificate, 2013 (distinction), Robert Gordon University

MSc Childhood Studies, 2013 (distinction), The University of Edinburgh

MSc Integrated Service Improvement 2012, The University of Edinburgh

Master of Social Work and Diploma in Social Work/CQSW 1996-1998, The University of Edinburgh

Bachelor of Arts 1985 – 1990, Macquarie University

Research interests

Research interests

Participation, Childhood and Youth Studies, Child Welfare, social work interventions, families, repositioning positions of power, looked after children, Recognition Theory in social work practice, community social work, reimagining outcomes, Qualitative Research Methods

Current research projects:

2021- 2024 Barnahus: Child's House of Healing : A new £1.5m project funded by the People’s Postcode Lottery. The Child’s House is based on the Barnahus model, and is a partnership between Children 1st (the lead organisation), Victim Support Scotland, Children England and our department. On welcoming the announcement Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said: “The Scottish Government supports the concept of a Barnahus for Scotland and is committed to bringing forward Scottish Barnahus Standards to support a trauma-informed, co-ordinated and effective response for child victims and witnesses of violence and abuse by placing the child or young person’s rights, well-being and best interests at the centre.” Lead for evaluation.

2019-2020 Recognition Matters: the value of recognition in child care and protection. This is a collaborative Knowledge Exchange and Impact project with Dr Ariane Critchley, Edinburgh Napier University and Family Group Decision Making Service, City of Edinburgh Council.

If you are interested in being supervised by Mary Mitchell, please see the links below (opening in new windows) for more information:

Works within

Staff Hours and Guidance

By appointment

Publications by user content

Publication Research Explorer link
Mitchell M. A retrospective case study approach to studying FGC outcomes. In de Roo A, Jagtenberg R, editors, Family Group Conference Research: Reflections and Ways Forward. 1 ed. eleven international publishing. 2021. p. 113-128
Critchley A, Mitchell M. Can knowledge exchange forge a collaborative pathway to policymaking? A case study example of the Recognition Matters knowledge exchange project. British Journal of Social Work. 2020 Dec 13;50(8):2298-2318. https://doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcaa220
Mitchell M. The value of recognition theory to Family Group Conferencing and child-care and protection. British Journal of Social Work. 2020 Dec 6. https://doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcaa207
Mitchell M, Ali S. Adaptive family group conferencing practice: Keeping families at the heart of decision making during COVID-19. 2020.
Mitchell M. Reimagining child welfare outcomes: Learning from Family Group Conferencing. Child and Family Social Work. 2020 May;25(2):211-220. https://doi.org/10.1111/cfs.12676
Cree VE, Morrison F, Mitchell M, Gulland J. Navigating the gendered academy: Women in social work academia. Social Work Education. 2020 Jan 23. https://doi.org/10.1080/02615479.2020.1715934
Mitchell M. Taking a fresh look at ‘outcomes’ in child care and protection: Learning from family group conferencing. 2019. Paper presented at National Child Protection and Welfare Social Work Conference, Cork, Ireland.
Mitchell M, Tisdall EKM, Riddell C. Learning From Family Group Conferencing: Reimagining approaches and outcomes to child care and protection. Centre for Research on Families and Relationships, 2018. 1 p.
Mcmellon C, Mitchell M. Participatory action research and young people. In Hamilton L, Ravenscroft J, editors, Building Research Design in Education: Theoretically informed Advanced Methods. 1 ed. Bloomsbury Academic. 2018
Mitchell M, McMellon C. Participatory action research with young people. In Hamilton L, Ravenscroft J, editors, Building Research Design in Education: Theoretically Informed Advanced Methods. London: Bloomsbury. 2018. p. 173-196
Mitchell M, Tisdall EKM, McCluskey G, Riddell S. Keeping Youth Away from Crime: Searching for Best European Practices. Edinburgh: Centre for Research in Education Inclusion and Diversity (CREID), University of Edinburgh, 2014. 45 p.
McCluskey G, Tisdall EKM, Riddell S, Mitchell M. Keeping Youth Away from Crime: Searching for Best European Practices: Report to the Providus team. University of Edinburgh, 2014. 41 p.