Skip to main content
The Childhood, Law & Policy Network (CLPN)

Dr Karen Smith


Lecturer in Equality Studies, University College Dublin, Ireland



Karen Smith is Lecturer in Equality Studies at University College Dublin. Her academic qualifications are in law and social policy and her research and teaching interests centre on childhood inequality across a number of dimensions and the application of governmentality theory to analysis of child policy. Her book The Government of Childhood: Discourse, Power and Subjectivity was published by PalgraveMacmillan in 2014. Recent research studies Karen has been involved in have been focused on the needs of refugee children admitted under the Irish Refugee Protection Programme for the Children’s Rights Alliance; the needs of reunified refugee families in Ireland carried out for Nasc; and the needs of children in Ireland now and in the future carried out for Barnardos Ireland.



Smith, K., Ní Raghallaigh, M. & Scholtz, J., (2020) “I hope like they talk with us like how they talk with Irish”: Difference, discrimination and affective inequality in the lives of young Syrian refugees resettled in Ireland. Journal of Youth Studies.

Smith, K. (2018). Better with less: (Re)governmentalizing the government of childhood. International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy. doi/full/10.1108/IJSSP-10-2017-0122 S

mith, K. (2014) The Government of Childhood: Discourse, Power and Subjectivity. Basingstoke: PalgraveMacmillan


Child policy; the government of childhood; policy for children and families admitted under resettlement and complementary mechanisms
Back to top