Centre for Knowledge, Innovation, Technology and Enterprise

Little Heresies Seminar Series12

Heresy #12: Troubled families or troubling policy

Heretic: Stephen Crossley, Durham University (7 April 2016).

Heretic Stephen Crossley talked about the Troubled Families Programme, launched in the aftermath of the 2011 riots, which works with some of England’s most troublesome and anti-social families. Stephen reviewed the claims made that the first phase of the programme had ‘turned around’ the lives of 99% of the 120,000 ‘troubled families’ identified at the outset of the programme and within the timescale. Now in its second phase the programme is working with 400,000 more ‘troubled families’, using a ‘persistent, assertive and challenging’ model of ‘family intervention’.

Stephen examined different aspects of the ‘troubled families’ story including: its intellectual antecedents; the misuse of research evidence throughout the programme; the extent to which the families constitute ‘neighbours from hell’; and the ability of ‘family intervention’ style practices to ‘turn around’ the lives of impoverished and disadvantaged families.

Listen to Heresy #12: Troubled families or troubling policy.