Learning lessons: Informing suicide prevention from a documentary analysis of Child Practice Reviews (CPRs) and Adult Practice Reviews (APRs)

Lead Research Organisation: Cardiff University
Department Name: Sch of Social Sciences


Child Practice Reviews (CPRs) and Adult Practice Reviews (APRs) take place where a serious
incident, most commonly a death, has occurred for a vulnerable child or adult (Welsh
Government 2016a; 2016b). They provide insights into how lessons can be learnt from
specific cases to inform practice, primarily with a view to mitigating future incidents
(Sidebotham et al. 2016). To date, there has been no comprehensive attempt to
systematically review all CPRs and APRs where a probable suicide death has occurred.
Therefore, this project will utilise these valuable sources of data and explore how services can
be better informed to protect vulnerable people at risk of suicide. The research questions to
be addressed in this project are as follows:
1. What psychosocial circumstances commonly precede suicides of vulnerable adults and
2. How do these circumstances differ by demographic (age, gender etc.) of vulnerable
individual who has completed suicide?
3. What recommendations can be made to service providers with a view to mitigate
future incidents of suicide in vulnerable children and adults?

To investigate the research questions, documentary analysis will be employed to conduct a
systematic review of all APRs and CPRs from 2013-2020 where a probable suicide death has
occurred. Content analysis will be conducted to organise the information into broad
categories, followed by an in depth thematic analysis, during which coding and category
construction will be undertaken to uncover the emergent themes (Bowen 2009). To
investigate research question 3, thematic codes established in previous research of APRs and
CPRs will be used as a reference point (Robinson et al. 2018; Rees et al. 2019). The data will
be analysed through the philosophical lens of critical realism. This will involve the application
of 'retroductive' reasoning, using the integration of theory and observations from the
documentary data to make contextual inferences about patterns of suicide risk and causality
in vulnerable individuals (Archer et al. 2009; May 2011). The sample of practice reviews will
be obtained from the National Independent Safeguarding Board. The research will abide by
the guidelines of the Cardiff University Social Research Ethics Committee and due to the
sensitivity of the data, particular consideration will be given to anonymity and data storage.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
ES/P00069X/1 01/10/2017 30/09/2027
2434412 Studentship ES/P00069X/1 01/10/2020 30/09/2023 Rosie Elizabeth MOORE