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From 5th of April until 13th of May 2022, you may submit your abstract by the following online form. 

Note: the deadline for abstract submissions have been extended until 13th of May 2022.



"Support for the well-being of foster children and the quality of foster care: Limits and possibilities"


The International Foster Care Research Network (IFCRN) was founded in 2007 under the impulse of Prof. Klaus Wolf and Dr. Daniela Reimer at Universität Siegen (Germany).


The 11th International Research Network in Foster Care Conference is a forum where scientific advances in foster care are presented and debated. This year's conference will address the issue of support, with a specific focus on social support, as enabler of quality foster care that promotes children's well-being and their rights.

Support has been considered one of the essential ingredients for effectively coping with the demands of foster care, and, it has been pointed out that social support makes the difference between foster care success and breakdowns (Macaskill, 1991). In fact, most policies provide a range of guidelines and forms of supports in order to improve the opportunities and outcomes of foster care.

Social support has been an important research topic since the 1990s. Currently it is again gaining importance, for at least four reasons, that raise questions on and demands for social support: (1) the global pandemic crisis situation has triggered new challenges into society and into foster care systems, (2) the children migratory flows and war conflicts together with the need to respond to emergencies, (3) the need to rethink protection systems in favor of more comprehensive and resilience-promoting frameworks, (4) the EU deinstitutionalization initiatives and UNICEF guidelines have transformed the care systems and have raised foster care to the preferred form of alternative care in Europe.

These points highlight the need for further research and debate on the subject, from an ecological perspective of foster care, in order to contribute to the advancement of knowledge, policies and practices.

In this context we have to ask ourselves: is the support being provided sufficient to meet the needs of children, foster families, families of origin? What challenges do children and families face in accessing services and support? What strategies are institutions developing in response to these challenges? What types of challenges are these children and families presenting? What specific support is needed for each stage of foster care?  Which support makes the difference in foster care?  How do group interventions support foster care? How can we help promote social support? What role do social support networks play? What experiences of positive reciprocal transactions across systems exist?

There are just some of the questions that may guide our discussion at the conference, under the banner of “supporting welfare and the quality of foster care and providing responses to ensure it.

We accept a) Individual papers and b) Symposia on the following thematic areas:

1.    Support and Social Support regarding stakeholders: 

  • Children- Youth: regarding special Characteristics of the child/youth: LGTBI+; Special Needs; Foster Former Youth in the transition to Young Adulthood

  • Foster Families

  • Biological Families

  • Professionals

2.    Research Methods on social support in foster care
3.    Structures and systems of social support 
4.    Interventions to provide social support
5.    Social support in transitions
6.    Social support and diversity




Individual papers:
1.    Abstracts should be 500 words or less.    

2.    Author’s details: Name and surname, e-mail, institution, indicate the presenting author.
2.    Format: oral or poster
3.    Sections: 

  • Objectives

  • Method

  • Results

  • Conclusions

  • List of 3-4 recommendations or takeaway points for the audience

4.    Abstracts must be submitted in English only.
5.    The presenting author of the individual paper should submit the abstract (The files format should be word or pdf)




1.    A symposium must include between 3 or 4 individual papers from different institutions that come together on the same theme (see          guidelines of  "Individual papers").

2.    The abstract of the symposium has a maximum of 1000 words. The abstract should include:

      a) The title of the symposium

      b) Framework of the symposium

      c) Title and authors, and institutions of each of the individual papers included in the symposium.

3.    The coordinator of the symposium submits the abstract of the symposium and attach all the abstracts (symposium plus each                     individual paper) in the submission (the files format should be word or pdf).
4.     Abstracts must be submitted in English only.



Abstract submissions: 5th of April to 13th of May


*The scientific committee reserves the right to make final decisions regarding the format of accepted abstracts.

*The scientific committee reserves the right to limit the number of papers presented by the same author.

We look forward to welcoming you in Barcelona!


For questions related to the conference please contact us at:, please indicate in the e-mail subject: IFCRN2022

For questions related to the Foster Care Research Network please contact Daniela Reimer, HAW School of Social Work, E-Mail:

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