Over the past twenty years, a growing number of countries have established national inquiries in relation to historic child abuse, encompassing investigations of abuse in residential institutions and foster-care, as well as abuse in the context of particular types of institution or specific child welfare programmes.
Historical researchers have engaged with these inquiries in a range of different roles – as members of inquiry secretariats, consultants, expert witnesses and, in at least one case, as the director of a national inquiry (Prof Pirjo Markkola in Finland).
This panel brings together speakers with a range of expertise across these different roles to explore what we can learn from a range of international examples about the relationship between historical research and child abuse enquiries.
Amongst the questions to be explored in this session are:
Professor Pirjo Markkola (Tampere University and former director of the Finnish national child abuse inquiry)
Professor Eoin O’Sullivan (Trinity College Dublin; his work with Mary Raftery on the history of abuse in Irish industrial schools led to the setting up of the Ryan Commission)
Professor Johanna Sköld (Linköping University and former member of the secretariat for the Swedish Inquiry into Child Abuse and Neglect in Institutions and Foster Homes)
Professor Shurlee Swain (Australian Catholic University and contributor of historical research to numerous abuse inquiries in Australia)
See below for full biographies.
There will be time for Q&A with the panel members and drinks and nibbles will be served.
This event is funded through an AHRC Leadership Fellows award held by Professor Gordon Lynch (University of Kent) which is developing work both on the abuse of former British child migrants and on the role of historical research in redressing past abuse more generally.
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