Dr Franziska Meinck

Franziska is an ESRC Future Research Leader Early Career Research Fellow in the Centre for Evidence-Based Interventions and an Extraordinary Professor at Optentia Research Unit, North-West University, South Africa. Her focus is on risk and protective factors of physical, emotional and sexual child and adolescent abuse in vulnerable populations in sub-Saharan Africa and on the development and testing of global child abuse measures. In 2016 she won the ISPCAN C. Henry Kempe Award for outstanding young professional in the field of child abuse and neglect. She will be moving to the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Edinburgh in August 2019.

Franziska holds a DPhil in Social Interventions (University of Oxford), an MSc in Evidence-Based Social Interventions (University of Oxford) and a BA in Social Work (Free University of Bolzano-Bozen). From 2014 to 2016 she worked as a post-doctoral research officer with Prof Lucie Cluver on the Young Carers Studies, a collaboration between Oxford University, South African universities, the South African Government and various NGOs and international organisations. 

Before joining the Department, Franziska worked as a child protection social worker for a local authority in Wales. She is a registered social worker with the HCPC and is an elected councilor of the International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (ISPCAN). 

Franziska is willing to supervise DPhil students with similar interests. Interested candidates should contact her directly.

Franziska is grateful to the ESRC and DSPI for funding her DPhil and post-doctoral work.


Funding news (December 2019): The first national study of child abuse and neglect in Australia: prevalence, health outcomes, and burden of disease.

Funder: Australian Government National Health and Medical Research Council, Project Grant, 2019-2023.  

Funded amount: $2,311,217.00. 

Chief Investigators: Dr Rosana Pacella (University of Chichester), Professor Michael Dunne (QUT), Professor Ben Mathews (QUT), Associate Professor James Scott (UQ), Professor David Finkelhor (University of New Hampshire), Dr Franziska Meinck (University of Oxford), Professor Daryl Higgins (Australian Catholic University), Dr Holly Erskine (UQ), and Dr Hannah Thomas (Queensland Centre for Mental Health Research). 

Franziska's own research project is funded by an ESRC Future Research Leaders Grant & DSPI. Its aims are:

1) Development and psychometric evaluation of a child abuse measure for use in intervention trials. This study pools data from seven intervention studies in three countries (South Africa, Philippines and Tanzania).

2) Development and psychometric evaluation of a brief child abuse measure for use in multi-component surveys. 

Franziska is also working with Prof Lucie Cluver on two studies: 

1) The development of a parenting intervention to prevent child abuse in families with teenagers in South Africa and the subsequent testing of it in a randomised trial funded by the European Research Council. This is part of the Parenting For Lifelong Health Initiative which is aiming to develop and make available free of charge a suite of parenting interventions for low- and middle income countries.

2) A longitudinal study investigating adherence to antiretroviral medication in HIV-positive adolescents in South Africa funded by the Nuffield Foundation.

Within these studies, Franziska is particulaly intersted in pathways to abuse, outcomes of abuse victimisation and social protection. 

  • Does free schooling affect pathways from adverse childhood experiences via mental health distress to HIV risk among adolescent girls in South Africa: a longitudinal moderated pathway model.

  • Is the Brief Child Abuse Potential Inventory (BCAPI) a valid measure of child abuse potential among mothers and fathers of young children in Germany?

  • Mental health in South African adolescents living with HIV: correlates of internalising and externalising symptoms.

  • European status report on preventing child maltreatment

  • Household economic strengthening through financial and psychosocial programming: Evidence from a field experiment in South Africa

  • Adaptation and psychometric properties of the ISPCAN Child Abuse Screening Tool for use in trials (ICAST-Trial) among South African adolescents and their primary caregivers.

  • How Does Exposure to Violence Affect School Delay and Academic Motivation for Adolescents Living in Socioeconomically Disadvantaged Communities in South Africa?

  • Multitype violence exposures and adolescent antiretroviral nonadherence in South Africa.

  • Can supportive parenting protect against school delay amongst violence-exposed adolescents in South Africa?

  • Sexual violence against children and adolescents in South Africa: making the invisible visible

  • Lifetime and past-year prevalence of children's exposure to violence in 9 Balkan countries: the BECAN study.

  • Parenting for Lifelong Health: a pragmatic cluster randomised controlled trial of a non-commercialised parenting programme for adolescents and their families in South Africa.

  • Development of a Parenting Support Program to Prevent Abuse of Adolescents in South Africa: Findings From a Pilot Pre-Post Study

  • Psychometric properties of the Adverse Childhood Experiences Abuse Short Form (ACE-ASF) among Romanian high school students.

  • Longitudinal Predictors of Child Sexual Abuse in a Large Community-Based Sample of South African Youth.

  • More
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