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Durham University

Department of Sociology

Sociology Department Staff

Andrea Darling, MSc Criminology

Contact Andrea Darling (email at

Understanding female-perpetrated child sexual abuse in organisational contexts

I am in the final year of my PhD in the Department of Sociology at Durham University (funded by the Economic and Social Research Council). I completed my MSc in Criminology at Teesside University in 2013, which included a research project on women who sexually abuse adolescents whilst in positions of trust. My interest in this field of research arose as a result of my professional career in child and vulnerable adult safeguarding.

My doctoral research extends the previous project to explore females who sexually abuse children in organisational contexts; how and why this occurs, the results and consequences (with regard to criminal justice, child protection and employment regulation systems) and the impacts on victims. This specific type of abuse appears generally unrecognised and under-reported and I hope that my research can raised awareness of the reality of female perpetrated child sexual abuse and educate those involved in employing women in positions of trust as well as other professionals, parents and carers to improve responses and outcomes for victims.

Selected Publications

Journal Article

Show all publications

Research Interests

  • Child safeguarding
  • Prevention of child sexual abuse
  • Situational Crime Prevention
  • Vulnerable adult safeguarding

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