Young people’s and parents’ voices in the shadow in adolescent care

In order for adolescent care to be successful, collaboration between different actors is required. A new study from Linnaeus University shows that the voices of adolescents and their parents often end up in the shadow when they meet professional actors.

In his earlier studies, Goran Basic, researcher in pedagogy at Linnaeus University, has been able to demonstrate that when three professional actors within the adolescent care understand each other's goals the collaboration can be successful.

When the professional actors create a coherent triad in which the parents and the adolescent take part, conditions for a successful collaboration are created.

The current study is based on 147 qualitative interviews with professional actors (different professional fields within social services and staff members at institutions), adolescents and parents. The results show that adolescents and parents often end up in a discursive shadow during interviews with the professional actors.

When two professional actors meet a third party, that is to say adolescents and parents, the discussion often end up focusing on how the professional actors could collaborate in a better way. The role of the adolescent and the parents in this collaboration is often not as clear.

This indicates that there is a conflict between how the collaboration is supposed to work and how it actually works. The activities of the social services is based on an idea where adolescents and parents should participate to an equally large extent in the collaboration with the professional actors, but the study shows that this participation is less strong for adolescents and parents.

More information

Read the article "Coherent triads and successful inter-professional collaboration: narratives of professional actors in the Swedish child welfare system"