Professor Ian Sinclair

Ian Sinclair took his first degree in philosophy and ancient history. After that he worked in secondary teaching, probation, social services, counselling and industrial and social research. Ian was appointed Professor of Social Work at University of York in 1989. In 1996 he became co-director of the Social Work Research and Development Unit at the same university. This has now joined with the Social Policy Research Unit where he is an emeritus (i.e. retired) professor.

Ian’s earlier work was in the fields of delinquency, adult relationships, and the welfare of old people. He gained his PhD from LSE while working at the Home Office Research Unit. More recently he has published on residential care and foster care for children. His latest study was done with Dr Claire Baker, Jenny Lee and Dr Ian Gibbs and dealt with stability and movement in the care system. His views are also influenced by his wife’s experience as a trained social worker in residential work and her activities in providing lodgings and support to homeless adults and young people. He has an OBE for services to child welfare.

Selected Publications Since 2003

  • Biehal, N., Ellison, S. and Sinclair, I., 2011. Intensive fostering: an independent evaluation of MTFC in an English setting. Children and Youth Services Review, 33, pp.2043-2049.
  • Wade, J., Biehal, N., Farrelly, N. and Sinclair, I., 2011. Caring for abused and neglected children: making the right decisions for reunification or long-term care. Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
  • Biehal, N., Ellison, S., Baker, C. and Sinclair, I., 2010. Belonging and permanence: outcomes in long-term foster care and adoption. BAAF.
  • Sinclair, I., 2010. Looked after children: can existing services ever succeed? A different view. Adoption & Fostering, 34(2), pp.8-13.
  • Sinclair, I., 2010. What makes for effective foster care: some issues. In: E. Fernandez and R. Barth, eds. How does foster care work? International evidence on outcomes. Jessica Kingsley.
  • Sinclair, I. and Wilson K., 2009. Foster care in England. In: G. Schofield and J. Simmonds, eds. The child placement handbook. London: BAAF.
  • Sinclair, I., 2008. Erfahrungen mit familiaren Umgangskontacte von Pflegerkindern in England (The English experience of contact in foster care), Forum Erziehungshilfen, 14(1), pp.10-14.
  • Sinclair, I., Baker C., Lee J. and Gibbs I., 2007. The pursuit of permanence: a study of the English care system. London: Jessica Kingsley.
  • Beecham, J. and Sinclair, I., 2007. Costs and outcomes in children’s social care. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
  • Sinclair, I., 2006. Residential care in the UK. In C. McAuley, P. Pecora and W. Rose, eds. Enhancing the well-being of children and families through effective interventions: international evidence for practice. London: Jessica Kingsley, pp.203-216.
  • Sinclair, I., 2005. Fostering now: messages from research. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
  • Sinclair, I., Baker, C., Wilson, K. and Gibbs, I., 2005. Foster children: where they go and how they do. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
  • Sinclair, I., Wilson, K. and Gibbs, I., 2005. Foster placements: why they succeed and why they fail. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
  • Sinclair, I., Gibbs, I. and Wilson, K., 2004. Foster carers: why they stay and why they leave. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
  • Sinclair, I., Gibbs, I. and Wilson, K., 2003. Matches and mismatches: the contribution of carers and children to the success of foster placements. British Journal of Social Work, 33, pp.871-884.
  • Wilson, K. and Sinclair, I., 2003. Policies and practice in working in foster care. In: M. Bell and K. Wilson, eds. The practitioner’s guide to working with families. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, pp.229-245.