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Team decision making in child welfare

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  • Nouwen, Eva
  • Decuyper, Stefan
  • Put, Johan

Abstract

Decision making in child welfare is increasingly being reconceptualized as a collaborative practice. While teams have the potential to make better decisions, this is not easy to achieve. Based on an extensive multi-disciplinary review and an in-depth case study of two child welfare teams in Flanders, we propose a framework to guide and evaluate team decision making in child welfare. The results indicate that the quality of the decision making process relates to team learning processes like team reflexivity and the construction of shared mental models. Team learning in turn seems to be affected by team leadership and a solid social and structural team architecture (committed professionals, trust and alignment). We also discuss the difficulty of evaluating decision quality in the context of child welfare, theoretical and practical implications, and lines for future research.

Suggested Citation

  • Nouwen, Eva & Decuyper, Stefan & Put, Johan, 2012. "Team decision making in child welfare," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(10), pages 2101-2116.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:cysrev:v:34:y:2012:i:10:p:2101-2116
    DOI: 10.1016/j.childyouth.2012.07.006
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Horwath, Jan & Morrison, Tony, 2011. "Effective inter-agency collaboration to safeguard children: Rising to the challenge through collective development," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 368-375, February.
    2. Lick, Dale W., 2006. "A new perspective on organizational learning: Creating learning teams," Evaluation and Program Planning, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 88-96, February.
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    5. Mohammed, Susan & Ringseis, Erika, 2001. "Cognitive Diversity and Consensus in Group Decision Making: The Role of Inputs, Processes, and Outcomes," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 85(2), pages 310-335, July.
    6. Gruenfeld, Deborah H & Mannix, Elizabeth A. & Williams, Katherine Y. & Neale, Margaret A., 1996. "Group Composition and Decision Making: How Member Familiarity and Information Distribution Affect Process and Performance," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 1-15, July.
    7. Schwalbe, Craig, 2004. "Re-visioning risk assessment for human service decision making," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 26(6), pages 561-576, June.
    8. van Ginkel, Wendy P. & van Knippenberg, Daan, 2009. "Knowledge about the distribution of information and group decision making: When and why does it work?," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 108(2), pages 218-229, March.
    9. Wells, Rebecca, 2006. "Managing child welfare agencies: What do we know about what works?," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(10), pages 1181-1194, October.
    10. Wells, Susan J. & Lyons, Peter & Doueck, Howard J. & Brown, C. Hendricks & Thomas, Judy, 2004. "Ecological factors and screening in child protective services," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 26(10), pages 981-997, October.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Kruzich, Jean M. & Mienko, Joseph A. & Courtney, Mark E., 2014. "Individual and work group influences on turnover intention among public child welfare workers: The effects of work group psychological safety," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 20-27.
    2. Vanschoonlandt, Femke & Vanderfaeillie, Johan & Van Holen, Frank & De Maeyer, Skrällan & Robberechts, Marijke, 2013. "Externalizing problems in young foster children: Prevalence rates, predictors and service use," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 716-724.
    3. repec:eee:cysrev:v:85:y:2018:i:c:p:219-227 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Sears, Jeanelle S. & Hall, Martin T. & Harris, Lesley M. & Mount, Shannon & Willauer, Tina & Posze, Lynn & Smead, Erin, 2017. "“Like a marriage”: Partnering with peer mentors in child welfare," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 80-86.
    5. Preston, Mark S., 2013. "Advancing case manager motivation in child welfare: Job control's curvilinear relationship and instrumental feedback's moderating influence," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(12), pages 2003-2012.
    6. Toros, Karmen & Tiko, Anne & Saia, Koidu, 2013. "Child-centered approach in the context of the assessment of children in need: Reflections of child protection workers in Estonia," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(6), pages 1015-1022.

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