Michael Nunno, D.S.W. is a Senior Extension faculty of the College of Human Ecology, Cornell University, and Co-Principal Investigator Residential Child Care Project at the Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research. Dr. Nunno has a background and an expertise in social policy, regulation, and legislation related child welfare issues as well as specific expertise in the identification, prevention, and etiology of child abuse and neglect in residential care. Related to these interests has been his work in the reduction of aggressive critical incidents in residential facilities, training and evaluation of performance competencies, and organizational implementation strategies to introduce crisis prevention systems and program models in children’s residential facilities. His research has examined how children die in restraints, the dynamics of adolescent female restraints episodes, and the impact of organizational climates and cultures on critical incidents. He serves as an expert in civil litigation cases throughout the United States where children have died or have been seriously injured while in out-of-home care.
Dr. Nunno has published his work in chapters of the books Child Protective Services Team Handbook and Understanding Abusive Families. He was the lead editor for the book For our own safety: Examining the safety of high-risk interventions for children and young people published by the Child Welfare League of America. His work has also appeared in the journals Child Abuse and Neglect: An International Journal, Children and Society, Protecting Children, Journal of Child Welfare, Children and Youth Services Review, Applied Developmental Science, Journal of Child and Family Studies, the Journal of Scottish Residential Care, the American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, and Child and Youth Care Forum. He sat on the expert panel for the Child Welfare League of America’s Best Practices Guidelines for Child Maltreatment in Foster Care and is currently a member of the International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (ISPCAN) Expert Faculty Program.
Dr. Nunno provides long-term planning and direction to the research and evaluation activities related to the Residential Child Care Project. A broad range of psychological, educational and organizational research and theory underpins both the Therapeutic Crisis Intervention (TCI) and Institutional Abuse (IAB) components. The project raises research questions such as: for abused and neglected children what constitutes safe and developmentally sound treatment in residential care; and, what impact does this care have on their treatment outcomes? A major project goal is to design multi-method research and evaluation strategies that ensure fidelity to the implementation process, as well as, the measurement of short and longer-term child outcomes.
To inform current practice, the RCCP 1) has reviewed children’s restraint and seclusion deaths; 2) analyzes aggressive incidents and restraints within facilities; 3) continues to support on-going research and evaluation on the safety, the use, and the impact of physical interventions with children; and 4) monitores our TCI system’s effectiveness, safety, use, and impact.
Dr. Nunno gives direction and consultation to the Child and Residential Experiences: Creating Conditions for Change (CARE) program model for residential child care workers that is built on principles of relationship, competency, trauma sensitivity, developmental appropriateness, family centeredness, and ecology. A core challenge for facilities who use this program model is to achieve organizational congruence within the best interests of the children in their care, and to improve their organizational climate and culture through participation-centered management and continuous quality improvement strategies. In 2008 child outcome variables were added to the evaluation design and the project is engaged in a quasi-experimental design to test its efficacy and effectiveness with children in residential care. This project has gone beyond its initial 3-year funding from The Duke Endowment and into a 4th and 5th year.
Holden, M.J., Anglin, J.P., Nunno, M.A., & Izzo, C.V. (2014). Engaging the total therapeutic residential care program in a process of quality improvement: Learning from the care model In J. K. Whittaker, J. Fernandez Del Valle & L. Holmes (Eds.), Therapeutic residential care with children and youth: Identifying promising pathways to evidence-based international practice. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley.
Nunno, M. A., Sellers, D.E., & Holden, M. J. (2014). Implications of translational research for the field of residential child care. Scottish Journal of Residential Child Care. 13(3).
Masters, J.K., Nunno, M., & Mooney, A.J. (2013). Should psychiatrics assist in the restraint of children and adolescents in psychiatric hospitals? Psychiatric Services, 64(2), 173-176. doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.001652012
Michael Nunno, D.S.W. is a Senior Extension Associate with the Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research, the College of Human Ecology, Cornell University. He is the co-principal investigator of the Residential Child Care Project. His current professional activities within this project focus on two major child welfare topics: the protection of children in out-of-home care; and, designing and evaluating crisis prevention and management systems for juvenile treatment, psychiatric, and correctional facilities. He is also the co-principal investigator for the CARE project funded by The Duke Endowment.
Dr. Nunno is the co-principal Investigator of the Residential Child Care Project and The Duke Endowment CARE implementation and research project.. As the co-Principal Investigator, he has the responsibility for the supervision and overall direction of the project's personnel, policies and programs. The Residential Child Care Project is statewide serving New York State, national serving over 35 states, and international serving Great Britain, Canada, Ireland, Australia, Bermuda, Russia, and Israel. Since 1980, fees-for service, grant and contract awards with the Federal government, New York and other states, and international organizations have totaled over $70 million. The CARE implementation and research project is a multi-year quasi-experimental evaluation design that will measure impact of CARE implementation on selected sites
Dr. Nunno is the co-principal Investigator of the Residential Child Care Project and The Duke Endowment CARE implementation and research project.. As the co-Principal Investigator, he has the responsibility for the supervision and overall direction of the project's personnel, policies and programs. The Residential Child Care Project is statewide serving New York State, national serving over 35 states, and international serving Great Britain, Canada, Ireland, Australia, Bermuda, Russia, and Israel. Since 1980, fees-for service, grant and contract awards with the Federal government, New York and other states, and international organizations have totaled over $70 million. The CARE implementation and research project is a multi-year quasi-experimental evaluation design that will measure impact of CARE implementation on selected sites.