Child Welfare Collaborative Decision Making Network

The Child Welfare Collaborative Decision Making Network consists of leaders in the field who convene annually at AFCC conferences to address emerging issues in child welfare dispute resolution.  The group first convened in 2007 at the AFCC Regional Training Conference in Columbus, Ohio and has hosted think tanks at subsequent annual conferences.  In addition to addressing ongoing policy and practice concerns, think tank participants have engaged in initiatives including: (1) a survey and interviews with child protection professionals (2007); (2) a special issue of Family Court Review on mediation and conferencing in child protection disputes (2009); and (3) Guidelines for Child Protection Mediation.


Child Protection Mediation (CPM) Model Competencies (PDF)
Laura Bassein, JD; Kelly Browe Olson, JD; Gregory Firestone, PhD; Marilou Giovannucci, MS; and Susan Storcel, JD. August (2019)

Guidelines for Child Protection Mediation (PDF)
Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (2012)

Reflections on the State of Consensus-Based Decision Making in Child Welfare (PDF) 
Bernie Mayer, Family Court Review, January 2009

Report on Survey and Interviews Conducted in Preparation for the September Think Tank on Child Protection Conflict Resolution (PDF)
Bernie Mayer and Joan Kathol, September 2007

Conflict Resolution in Child Welfare: Collecting the Wisdom of 25 Years of Experience (PDF)
Joan Kathol and Bernie Mayer, Fall 2007

Decision-making and Conflict Resolution in Child Welfare: Think Tank II Summary (PDF) 

Child Protection Collaborative Decision Making Network: Summary of Think Tank III (PDF)

Family Court Review Special Issue on Mediation and Conferencing in Child Protection Disputes
January 2009

Support for the Child Welfare Collaborative Decision Making Network has been provided by AFCC, American Humane Association, Werner Institute for Negotiation and Dispute Resolution, National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges and the National Center for State Courts.

Steering Committee

  • Marilou Giovanucci, Chair
  • Crystal Duarte
  • Karen Largent
  • Bernie Mayer
  • Kelly Browe Olson
  • Susan Storcel
  • Susan Schafer

Table of Contents