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Nora Duckett

Profile summary

Professional biography

Nora Duckett

I am a lecturer in the Faculty of Well-being Education and Languages Studies (WELS).

I am part of the Social Work Central Academic Team.   I am strongly committed to improving and developing social work practice through teaching and learning and by keeping the values of social work and social justice at front and centre.   

My practice experience includes 5 years pre-qualifying work as a family support practitioner and 10 years post qualification in statutory and voluntary sectors in England.  My qualified practice experience has been as children and families’ area social worker, a hospital social worker, an NSPCC social worker developing services for sexually exploited children and a strategy manager for a youth homelessness charity 'Safe in the City' which focused on strengthening and co-ordinating services' responses in 4 east London boroughs (simultaneously), for children who run away from care and home. 

Since 2004 I have worked in Higher Education, designing and delivering teaching and learning opportunities for small and large groups of social work students and students from other professional disciplines. I have delivered synchronous and asynchronous teaching to undergraduate, post graduate and post qualified learners. I have contributed to module team teaching and I been a module and course lead. I have undertaken research and evaluation projects and I have co-authored two editions of a social work child protection textbook which is used as a core text on social work courses in England. 

Research interests

My practice and research interests combine to focus on child protection and how learning about types and patterns of professional and organisational dangerousness can support professionals to develop and improve proactive child protection work and critical curiosity.

I have carried out European Commission funded comparative research into understanding youth homelessness trajectories and reinsertion in 4 European countries and links to children running away from home and care. 

I have undertaken local authority commissioned service evaluations. 

Teaching interests

My teaching interests are Critical Social Work, Working with Children and Families, Child Protection. Practice Learning, Practice Education, 

I have worked as an undergraduate and post graduate module team member and module and course leader in social work lecturer positions prior to my current post with the Open University

Impact and engagement

Research /Publications   

Duckett, N. (2022) ‘Exploring Professional Curiosity’ in Creative Approaches to Social Work Practice EducationSt. Albans; Critical Publishing

Duckett, N. (2022) 'Think of the Children'  Literary Review Book Review

Duckett, N. and Spandler, H. (2018) Radically Seeking Social Justice for Survivors: Liz Davies - Radical Pioneer. Critical and Radical Social Work. Vol 6: Number 1, March 2018

Co-author with Liz Davies. (2016) Proactive Child Protection and Social Work (2nd Edition). London: Learning Matters/Sage.

Smith, J., Duckett, N. and Menezes, F. (2015) ‘Running to the Future: Youth inequalities, homelessness and Points of reinsertion’ in A Kamp and A Kelly Critical Youth Studies in the 21st Century.  Leiden, NL: Brill Books.

Duckett, N. (2010) Testing Early Intervention Models. Work Package 10. Cities Institute, London Metropolitan University, UK. 

Smith, J and Duckett, N. (2010) Thematic Report 3: Capability and Resilience among Young Homeless Populations A deliverable of the  Combating social exclusion among young homeless populations: a comparative investigation of youth homeless pathways and appropriate reinsertion methods, funded by the European Union Seventh Framework Programme under the Socio-economic Sciences and Humanities theme. 

A Report on the Young Runaways Situation in London For the Government Office for London Co-author with Ecotec  (2010) 


London Borough of Islington’s Intensive Community Support Packages (2008)     

London Borough of Islington’s eligibility criteria for children with disabilities (2006-2007)      

Stretegy development 

East London Joint Protocol Framework for Agencies Supporting Children and Young People Who Run Away from Care and Home (2004)


External collaborations

Child Protection Advisor to Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) on the Care Leavers Oral History Project. The British Library, A National Voice (ANV) and the Roundhouse (London) 2012-2013

Advisory board member of the London Youth at Risk and the nia project’s Safe Choices Joint Training Initiative. Safe choices offered intensive support and structured group work programmes to young women experiencing, or at risk of sexual violence, sexual exploitation, gang involvement or association, and /or violent offending. (2008-2011)

Consultant to BBC Real Story current affairs programme  'Becky's Story'   A documentary drama about a sexually exploited child. (29th August 2006)