We are working to build a sustainable network of researchers and practitioners who will (1) produce new knowledge, (2) foster the design and evaluation of innovative approaches to the prevention, detection, and treatment of child maltreatment, (3) create interdisciplinary education opportunities and experiences for Penn State students, and (4) put the products of these efforts to work in communities throughout Pennsylvania and beyond. Further, the Network works to serve as the University’s coordinating entity for the dissemination of relevant communications, public awareness, student engagement, and service pertaining to child protection and well-being information and initiatives.


The Network's research efforts focus on the causes, prevention, detection, consequences, and treatment of child abuse and neglect. The Network is dedicated to improving the well­being of children, youth and families, while expanding Penn State’s internationally recognized expertise in research, practice and education.

We provide opportunities and support for collaborative and translational science in order to address the complex problems of child maltreatment. Our work covers the spectrum, ranging from research on child development and clinical treatments that foster child health, to public policy that promotes child safety and well­being.


Through undergraduate and graduate­level coursework and with other educational opportunities for faculty, staff, students, and professionals the Network strives to raise awareness and works to train the next generation of professionals. In addition, the Network facilitates events including an annual conference aimed at increasing awareness, disseminating cutting­edge research, and supporting innovative programs.


The Network aims to push the bounds of social and public policy through efficient translation of evidence­based research. By partnering with community providers and public policy leaders at the local, state, and federal levels, the Network's goal is to raise public awareness about the scope and gravity of child maltreatment and to elevate this issue as worthy of significant public health investment. Countering child maltreatment is a community concern that requires community­wide efforts. We engage with a wide array of agencies and organizations to learn more about local needs and to contribute expertise that will lead to safe, healthful environments for all children.