Department of Social & Policy Sciences

Professor Ian Butler



Ian Butler


Queen's Anniversary Prize

View an overview of the research that contributed to the Queen's Anniversary Prize in 2012.


Ian Butler is a qualified social worker with considerable practice and managerial experience. He has worked in residential and field settings, mainly with children and their families, in the statutory, voluntary and independent sectors. He also worked as a parliamentary research assistant for members of the Labour Party before taking up post as a lecturer in social work at Cardiff University.

He was Director of Social Work Studies at Cardiff before moving to Keele University where he was Professor of Social Work and Dean of the Graduate School. He was also Visiting Professor in the Department of Child Health, Cardiff University between 2001 and 2004.

He is a member of the Academy of Social Sciences (2003); a past Editor of the British Journal of Social Work (1999- 2004) and former Chair of the JUC SWEC (2003/4).

In 1995, he was made an Honorary Member of the Council of the NSPCC in recognition for his work in the field of child protection. From 2003 to 2012, Professor Butler was seconded to the Welsh Assembly Government where he was Special Advisor to the First Minister for Wales.

He is a Member of the Board of the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (CAFCASS), England.

Research interests

  • development of public policy affecting children, young people and their families
  • the role of policy failures, iconic cases and scandal in the production of welfare policy and in the micro-politics of policy making.
  • children and young people and the accounts that they provide of the lived experience of contemporary childhood(s) and current forms of welfare

Current projects


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