One-year fellowship to disseminate and increase the impacts of a PhD study, Caring Lives, that investigated how the impacts of caring vary for children depending on their caring and family circumstances.


Caring Lives was a PhD study of the young carer spectrum, including young carers with substantial responsibilities, but also those with lesser responsibilities who have been less involved in research. The study included the following:

  • A realist review that sought to understand why the impacts of caring varied for children depending on their individual caring responsibilities and home circumstances.
  • Quantitative modelling that compared the mental health of all young carers, those with higher-level responsibilities, and children without responsibilities over time.
  • A phenomenology that recruited young carers from schools to ensure that participants reflected the wider young carer spectrum. Each participant attended three interviews to share their changing experiences of caring over a year-long period.

Investigation of the wider spectrum reinforced the findings of past research concerning the negative impacts of excessive responsibilities. However this contrasted with many who were in control of their more manageable roles. The research has implication for how we support the different parts of the spectrum, but also suggests the need for awareness raising to reflect this wider spectrum before focusing on problematic caring roles.

Activities and Methods

The one-year ESRC-funded fellowship provides an excellent opportunity to disseminate and increase the impacts of the doctoral study. Planned activities include the publication of articles and presenting at academic conferences. The main focus though is to share the findings and seek feedback from policy officers, practitioners and young carer groups, in order to inform future research. The will be done through organising an Exchange session, presenting at national events, and meeting with key individuals and organisations.

Lead Person

Principal InvestigatorEd Janes
Related SchoolsN/A
Related partnersN/A
FundersThe Caring Lives PhD was funded by the ESRC, and the current project is funded by the ESRC as a Postdoctoral Research Fellowship.
Related publicationsN/A
Related links
Related documentsN/A