Social Policy and Society


Conceptualising the Contexts, Mechanisms and Outcomes of Intensive Family Intervention Projects

Elaine Battya1 and John Flinta2

a1 Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research, Sheffield Hallam University E-mail:

a2 Department of Town and Regional Planning, University of Sheffield E-mail:


Intensive family intervention projects have become an increasingly prominent mechanism within anti-social behaviour and social policy programmes in the UK and are supported, in principle, by the new coalition government. They have also been the subject of considerable academic controversy within the evaluative and critical literature. This article attempts to inform continuing debates about the purpose and effects of these projects by conceptualising the contexts within which interactions between projects and families occur; classifying the component aspects of roles and support provided; and presenting a three-part typology of potential outcomes from project interventions.