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A Study of Intercountry Adoption Outcomes in Ireland Since 1980 Phase 1

Research Staff

Prof. Sheila Greene, Dr. Elizabeth Nixon

About the Project


This project was carried out in response to the Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Cooperation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption which under Article 9 © requires Central Authorities to take all appropriate measures to promote the development of adoption counselling and post-adoption services. A consultation process was carried out by the Adoption Board with intercountry adoption support groups during 2003. Major causes for concern were identified as the effectiveness of preparation courses and the lack of post-placement support in intercountry adoption cases. The Board wished to address these important issues with this research

What did the research focus on?

The key objectives for this phase of the research project were:

  1. To identify, explore and evaluate the pre-placement (including preparation and assessment) and placement experiences and needs of children across a range of ages and countries of origin who have been adopted into this State
  2. To identify explore and evaluate the post-placement experiences and needs of children across a range of ages and countries of origin who have been adopted into this State;
  3. To identify the factors relating to pre-placement, placement and post-placement procedures and practices which contribute to successful intercountry adoption outcomes and to make recommendations along these lines.

What did the research involve?

The research involved in the first place an extensive literature review covering research into outcomes of intercountry adoption, policies and practices in a range of other countries and methodologies employed in carrying out such research; successive phases will entail the compilation of a database, consultation with a selection of groups and experts as well as with adoptive parents and children, the selection of measures, design of interview schedules and questionnaires and the completion of a pilot study. A full survey will then be conducted with a sample of 200 children and young people and a control group. Interviews will be held with system stakeholders, teachers, social workers and other professionals.

Final products of the research

The final report was published in 2007

Last updated 15 March 2010 by The Children′s Research Centre (Email).