Fred Wulczyn, a male-presenting person, smiles towards the camera against a gray background.

Fred Wulczyn

969 E. 60th Street
Chicago, IL 60637

Areas of Expertise
Child Welfare and Child Protection
Epidemiology and public health
Fiscal policy
Foster Care
Program Evaluation
Research and evaluation methodology
UChicago Affiliations
Chapin Hall


  • Haskins, R., Wulczyn, F., & Webb, M. B. (eds). (2007). Child protection: Using research to improve policy and practice. Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press.
  • Wulczyn, F., Barth, R., Jones Harden, B., Landsverk, J., & Yuan, Y. Y. (2005). Beyond common sense: Child welfare, child well-being, and the evidence for policy reform. New York, NY: Aldine Transaction, Inc.

Peer-Reviewed Articles

  • Wulczyn, F., & Halloran, J. (2017). Foster care dynamics and system science: Implications for research and Policy. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 14(10), 1181.
  • Wulczyn, F., Vesneski, W., Huhr, S., Monahan-Price, K., Martinez, Z., Verhulst, C. & Weiss, A. (2016). The Value-Added Impact of Fast-Track Adoption Policy on Adoption Rates. Global Social Welfare, 3(2), 97-106.
  • Wulczyn, F., Alpert, L., Monahan-Price, K., Huhr, S., Palinkas, & Pinsoneault, L. (2015). Research Evidence Use in the Child Welfare System. Child Welfare, 94(2), 141-165.
  • Chamberlain, P., Feldman, S. W., Wulczyn, F., Saldana, L., & Forgatch, M. (2015). Implementation and Evaluation of Linked Parenting Models in a Large Urban Child Welfare System. Child Abuse & Neglect, 53, 27-39.
  • Goldhaber-Fiebert, J. D., Babiarz, K. S., Garfield, R. L., Wulczyn, F., Landsverk, J., & Horwitz, S. M. (2014). Explaining variations in state foster care maintenance rates and the implications for implementing new evidence-based programs. Children and Youth Services Review, 39, 183–206.
  • Holmes, L., Landsverk, J., Ward, H., Rolls-Reutz, J., Saldana, L., Wulczyn, F., & Chamberlain, P. (2014). Cost calculator methods for estimating casework time in child welfare services: A promising approach for use in implementation of evidence-based practices and other service innovations. Children and Youth Services Review, 39, 169–176.
  • Wulczyn, F., & Landsverk, J. (2014). Research to practice in child welfare systems: Moving forward with implementation research. Children and Youth Services Review, 39, 145–146.
  • Landsverk, J. A., & Wulczyn, F. H. (2013). Child placement as a response to child abuse and neglect. Washington, DC: Institute of Medicine. (Paper commissioned by the Committee on Child Maltreatment Research, Policy, and Practice for the Next Decade, IOM, Washington, DC). (unpublished)
  • Wulczyn, F., Gibbons, R., Snowden, L., & Lery, B. (2013). Poverty, Social Disadvantage, and the Black/White Placement Gap. Children and Youth Services Review, 35, 65–74.
  • Goldhaber-Fiebert, J. D., Snowden, L. R., Wulczyn, F., Landsverk, J., & Horwitz, S. M. (2011). Economic evaluation research in the context of Child Welfare policy: A structured literature review and recommendations. Child Abuse & Neglect, 35(9), 722–740.
  • Goldhaber-Fiebert, J. D., Bailey, S. L., Hurlburt, M. S., Zhang, J., Snowden, L. R., Wulczyn, F., Landsverk J., & Horwitz, S.M. (2011). Evaluating Child Welfare Policies with Decision-Analytic Simulation Models. Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research, 1–12.
  • Wulczyn, F., Chen, L., & Courtney, M. (2011). Family reunification in a social structural context. Children and Youth Services Review, 33 (3), 424-430.
  • Wulczyn, F., Chen, L., & Orlebeke, B. (2009). Evaluating contract agency performance in achieving reunification. Children and Youth Services Review, 31 (5), 506-512.
  • Wulczyn, F. (2009). Epidemiological perspectives on maltreatment prevention. The Future of Children, 19(2), 39-66.
  • Wulczyn, F., Smithgall, C., & Chen, L. (2009). Child well-being: The intersection of schools and child welfare. Review of Research in Education, 33(1), 35-62.
  • Wulczyn, F., Chen, L., & Hislop, K. (2006). Adoption dynamics and the Adoption and Safe Families Act. Social Service Review, 80(4), 585-608.
  • Wulczyn, F., & Zimmerman, E. (2005). Sibling placements in longitudinal perspective. Children and Youth Services Review, 27(7), 741-763.
  • Wulczyn, F. (2005). From anticipation to evidence: Research on the Adoption and Safe Families Act. Virginia Journal of Social Policy & the Law, 12, 371-399.
  • Courtney, M., Needell, B., & Wulczyn, F. (2004). Unintended consequences of the push for accountability: The case of national child welfare performance standards. Children and Youth Services Review, 26(12), 1141-1154.
  • Wulczyn, F. (2004). Family reunification. The Future of Children, 14(1), 94-113.
  • Wulczyn, F., Kogan, J., & Jones Harden, B. (2003). Placement stability and movement trajectories. Social Service Review, 77(2), 212-236.
  • Wulczyn, F. (2003). Closing the gap: Are changing exit patterns affecting the time African American children spend in foster care relative to Caucasian children. Children and Youth Services Review, 25(5/6), 431-462.
  • Baker, A., Wulczyn, F., & Dale, N. (2005). Covariates of length of stay in residential treatment. Child Welfare, 84(3), 363-386.
  • Wulczyn, F., Brunner Hislop, K., & Jones Harden, B. (2002). The placement of infants in foster care. Infant Mental Health Journal, 23(5), 454-475.
  • Wulczyn, F., Kogan, J., & Dilts, J. (2001). The effect of population dynamics on performance measurement. Social Service Review, 75(2), 292-317.
  • Wulczyn, F., & Orlebeke, B. (2000). Fiscal reform and managed care in child welfare services. Policy & Practice of Public Human Services, 58(3).
  • Wulczyn, F., Orlebeke, B., & Melamid, E. (2000). Measuring contract agency performance with administrative data. Child Welfare, 79(5), 457-474.
  • Wulczyn, F. (2000). Federal fiscal reform in child welfare services. Children and Youth Services Review, 22(2), 131-159.
  • Wulczyn, F. (1996). A statistical and methodological framework for analyzing the foster care experiences of children. Social Service Review, 70(2), 318-329.
  • Goerge, R., Wulczyn, F., & Harden, A. (1997). New comparative insights into states and their foster children. Spectrum: Journal of State Government, 70(1), 30.
  • Goerge, R., Wulczyn, F., & Fanshel, D. (1994). A foster care research agenda for the ’90S. Child Welfare, 73(5), 525-549.
  • Wulczyn, F., & Goerge, R. (1992). Foster care in New York and Illinois: The challenge of rapid change. Social Service Review, 66(2), 278-294.
  • Wulczyn, F. (1991). Caseload dynamics and foster care reentry. Social Service Review, 65(1), 133-156.

Book Chapters

  • Wulczyn, F., Lery, B., & Snowden, L. Bridgette Lery, & Lonnie Snowden. (2014). Poverty and the black/white placement gap: Using context to understand the role of evidence-based interventions. In A. Shlonksy & R. Benbenishty (Eds.), From evidence to outcomes in child welfare: An international reader (pp. 105-116). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
  • Wulczyn F. H., Feldman S., Horwitz S.M., & Alpert, L. (2014) Child maltreatment prevention: The problem of resource allocation. In J. Korbin & R. Krugman (Eds.), Handbook of child maltreatment (pp. 341-350). Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer.
  • Goerge, R., Wulczyn, F., & Harden, A. (1999). Foster care dynamics. In P. Curtis, G. Dale, & J. Kendall. (Eds.), The foster care crisis: Translating research into policy and practice (pp. 17-44). Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press.
  • Wulczyn, F. (1997). Methodological considerations in outcomes management in family and child welfare. In E. Mullen & J. Magnabosco (Eds.), Outcomes measurement in the human services (pp. 181-188). Washington, DC: NASW Press.
  • Wulczyn, F. (1996). Child welfare reform, managed care, and reinvestment. In A. Kahn & S. Kamerman (Eds.), Children and their families in big cities: Strategies for service reform. New York, NY: Columbia University Press.
  • Wulczyn, F. (1996). HomeRebuilders: A family reunification demonstration. In R. Barth, J. Duerr-Berrick, & N. Gilbert (Eds.), Child welfare research review, Vol. 2 (pp. 252-271). New York, NY: Columbia University Press.
  • Wulczyn, F. (1994). Birth status and infant foster care placements in New York City. In R. Barth, J. Duerr-Berrick, & N. Gilbert (Eds.), Child welfare research review, Vol. 1 (pp. 146-184). New York, NY: Columbia University Press.

Fred Wulczyn is a Senior Research Fellow at Chapin Hall. He is the 2011 recipient of the James E. Flynn Prize for Research and has been recipient of the National Association of Public Child Welfare Administrators’ (NAPCWA) Peter Forsythe Award for leadership in public child welfare. In 2014, he was elected to the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare. He is lead author of Beyond Common Sense: Child Welfare, Child Well-Being, and the Evidence for Policy Reform(Aldine, 2005) and coeditor of Child Protection: Using Research to Improve Policy and Practice (Brookings 2007).

Wulczyn is director of the Center for State Foster Care and Adoption Data, a collaboration of Chapin Hall, the American Public Human Services Association, and other research partners. An expert in the analysis of administrative data, he was an architect of Chapin Hall’s Multistate Foster Care Data Archive and constructed the original integrated longitudinal database on children’s services in Illinois, now in use for more than 25 years. The databases he has developed give state administrators capacity to analyze key child welfare outcomes, compare outcomes across agencies and jurisdictions, project future service patterns, test the impact of policy and service innovations, and monitor progress.

Wulczyn also designed two major social experiments: the Child Assistance Program and the HomeRebuilders project. The Child Assistance Program was awarded the Innovations in Government Award from Harvard University and the Ford Foundation. Also in the realm of public policy, he developed the nation’s first proposal to change the federal law limiting the ability of states to design innovative child welfare programs, which then led to the development of the Title IV-E waiver programs used by states to undertake system reform in child welfare programs. He continues to lead the field in developing alternative approaches to financing child welfare programs.

Wulczyn received a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration (now the Crown Family School). A graduate of Juniata College, he was awarded the distinguished Alumni Award for his contributions on behalf of children and families. He earned a M.S.W. from Marywood University, which honored him with its distinguished Alumni Award.