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July 18, 2014

NPO Logo National Parents Organization improves the lives of children and strengthens society by protecting every child's right to the love and care of both parents after separation or divorce. We seek better lives for children through family court reform that establishes equal rights and responsibilities for fathers and mothers.
Bridging the Gap between Empirical Evidence and Socio-Legal Practice
Submitted by International Council on Shared Parenting

Two Homes
The International Conference on Shared Parenting on 9-11, July 2014 in Bonn, Germany under the theme "Bridging the Gap between Empirical Evidence and Socio-Legal Practice" was the first international and interdisciplinary gathering of scholars, practitioners and NGO representatives interested in the emerging paradigm of shared parenting in families in which parents are living apart. The conference was jointly chaired by the President of the International Council on Shared Parenting (ICSP), Professor Edward Kruk, Canada, and Professor Dr. jur. Hildegund Sünderhauf, Lutheran University Nuremberg, Germany, and supported, among others, by the German Federal Ministry of Family (Bundesministerium für Familie, Senioren, Frauen und Jugend/BMFSFJ).

A wide range of topics as well as perspectives on shared parenting were discussed and debated, leading to 6 major theses. "First of all," Professor Kruk, stated, "shared parenting — being defined as encompassing both shared parental authority and shared parental responsibility — is a viable post-divorce parenting arrangement. Thus national family law should at least include the possibility to give shared parenting orders." Nevertheless, "an accessible network of family relationship centres that offer family mediation and other relevant support services are critical in the establishment of a legal presumption of shared parenting, and vital to the success of shared parenting arrangements," Professor Sünderhauf underlined. "The above apply to the majority of children and families, including conflict families, but not to situations of substantiated family violence and child abuse." The Preliminary Conference Conclusions are available on the conference website:
The International Council on Shared Parenting (ICSP) will offer conferences on an annual basis. The follow-up International Conference on Shared Parenting is scheduled for 28-30 May 2015 in Bonn, Germany.

Conference Conclusions:

  1. At the conclusion of our first International Conference on Shared Parenting the Scientific Committee has developed the following Consensus Statement:

  2. Keeping in mind that the main goal of our Council is to develop evidence-based approaches to the needs and rights of children whose parents are living apart, we established as the theme for our first conference, "Bridging the Gap between Empirical Evidence and Socio-Legal Practice". We drew around 100 delegates from 17 countries to our first conference, from the scientific, family profession and civil society sectors.

    This was the first such gathering of scholars, practitioners and NGO representatives interested in the emerging paradigm of shared parenting in families in which parents are living apart. A wide range of topics as well as perspectives on shared parenting were discussed and debated, and at the end of the conference we were challenged in regard to determining what sort of consensus emerged on a number of important issues that we discussed and debated. Read more...

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First Annual Conference of the International Council on Shared Parenting Met July 9-11, 2014 in Bonn, Germany

Ned Holstein
Ned Holstein

National Parents Organization has actively supported the formation of a new professional society, the International Council on Shared Parenting (ICSP). ICSP is based in Germany, and brings together researchers, child development experts, attorneys and judges from many countries, especially from Europe. It recently successfully completed its First Annual International Conference on Shared Parenting, drawing participants from 22 countries. View Ned's comments by clicking here. Read more...

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