"Across Europe, young people in public care are known to be at risk of poor outcomes in adult life, in relation to indicators including education, health, homelessness and crime. To address such disadvantage and support transitions from care to adulthood, research must attend to the complexity of young people’s everyday lives, located in social and cultural contexts and entwined with family and community. The IEF will address these critical concerns in a training-through-research project, focused on theoretical and methodological development. It aims to inform cross-national understandings of outcomes through a biographical (re)conceptualisation of ‘transitions’ that draws on cutting edge theory and methodology in youth and family studies. The project will make a substantive contribution to a critical knowledge gap, by: (a) developing a new theoretical and methodological framework for the study of everyday family lives and transitions to adulthood in research with young people in care; and (b) testing this framework in an exploratory cross-national comparative study that combines analysis of new data collected with young people in public care in France and England and archived general population data from young people who participated in the landmark UK Inventing Adulthoods study. This work will develop the fellow’s career in three core areas: (i) establishing new interdisciplinary and cross-national understandings; (ii) developing cutting edge methodological skills; and (iii) gaining a broad interdisciplinary and international social scientific experience and transferable skills, including experience of cross-national project leadership and the creation of future collaborative opportunities within and beyond the host research team. The fellow, scientist in charge and collaborator each bring distinctive disciplinary knowledge and cross-national experience, together building new interdisciplinary understandings across country contexts."
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