Edward Kruk

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Edward Kruk
EducationPh.D., Social Policy and Social Work
Alma materUniversity of Toronto, University of Edinburgh
Known forFamily Studies, Father-child relationships, Shared parenting
ChildrenStephan, Liam
AwardsQueen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal
Scientific career
InstitutionsUniversity of British Columbia

Edward Kruk is a Canadian sociologist and social worker who has performed internationally recognized research on child custody, shared parenting, family mediation, divorced fathers, parental alienation, parental addiction, child protection, and grandparent access to their grandchildren. He is an associate professor of social work at the University of British Columbia. Kruk is the founding president of the International Council on Shared Parenting.

Education and personal life[edit]

Kruk was born in England. As an undergraduate, he studied and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology and psychology at the University of Toronto. He continued his studies there, earning a master's degree in social work. He subsequently moved to Scotland where he obtained a Ph.D in social policy and social work at the University of Edinburgh.[1]

Scientific work[edit]

Shared parenting[edit]

Kruk conducted research on shared parenting after divorce or separation. In particular, his research highlights the importance of the father's involvement to the children's well being. He also studied the impact of family separation on estranged fathers.[2][3][4][5]

As part of his research, Kruk has studied children's reactions to shared parenting and the family court system.[6][7]

Kruk has also studied the effect of mothers who have lost custody rights. He noted that "when accusations are made that court systems are biased in favor of mothers in the US and Canada, the courts have responded with an increased ratio of legal determinations of paternal custody as opposed to shared parenting. This places a mother's relationship with their children at serious risk." Taking an international perspective, he has noted that the gender aspect of the shared parenting discussion is very different across the world. In countries like Iceland, shared parenting is seen by women as an important gender equality issue. In contrast, many women's organizations in Canada and the United States are against shared parenting, with some going so far as characterizing it as a "fathers' rights conspiracy." Yet in other countries, such as Turkey and Iran, shared parenting is seen by women as an important women's rights issue, as sole paternal custody is the current norm. Kruk has concluded that "the characterization of parental alienation and shared parenting as 'fathers' rights' issues has rendered invisible the plight of many mothers, and negatively affected the global campaign to establish shared parenting as the foundation of family law as a fundamental right of women and their children."[8][9][10]

Kruk has also evaluated the reasons for push-back against shared parenting. According to Kruk, there have been three waves of criticism against shared parenting as a legal presumption and the default custody arrangement. In the first wave, shared parenting was considered outlandish as it was thought that (i) children need one primary parental figure to bond with, (ii) child development suffers from frequent moves between two households, and (iii) one should not disrupt the 'status quo'. When scientific research showed these assumptions to be false, a second wave of criticism argued that shared parenting increases parental conflict and is only suitable for parents who get along well as co-parents. When research again showed the opposite to be true, a third wave of criticism acknowledged that shared parenting may be the best solution for most children, but that there should be no presumptions in custody proceedings , so that each judge can decide what arrangement is in the best interest of a child.[11][12]

Grandparents and grandchildren[edit]

As part of his work on family mediation, Kruk determined that it was important for children of divorce to have an active relationship with their grandparents. He concluded that "Grandparents often play a vital role in helping grandchildren adjust to the consequences of parental divorce, providing a sanctuary for the emotional needs of their grandchildren at a time when parents, faced by the multiple losses and transitions attendant to divorce, maybe less emotionally available and responsive to their children."[13][14][15]

Parental alienation[edit]

Defining it as a form of family violence, Kruk and colleagues have argued that "parental alienation has been like the historical social and political denial or other forms of abuse in many parts of the world (e.g., child abuse a century ago)." In order to prevent and overcome parental alienation, Kruk has argued for establishing shared parenting as the foundation of family law, effective legal enforcement parenting orders, professional recognition of parental alienation as a form of child abuse and the provision of effective treatment programs and reunification services for alienated parents and their children.[16][17][18][19]

Public education and media[edit]

Kruk writes a regular column on "Co-Parenting After Divorce" for Psychology Today, covering a wide range of topics related to co-parenting, family mediation, child custody, shared parenting and parental alienation.[20] He has been interviewed and his research has been quoted by both national and international media, including The Salt Lake Tribune,[21] the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation,[22] the Daily Herald,[23] The Daily Caller,[24] Click at Life,[25] the Post Millennial,[26] Deseret News,[27] the Gospel Herald,[28] the National Review,[29] The Gleaner,[30] the Sun Sentinel,[31] The Daily Telegraph,[32] Diário de Notícias,[33] Religión en Libertad,[34] Aargauer Zeitung,[35] Delfi,[36] News 247,[37] Aftonbladet,[38] and Fam Times.[39]

Selected publications[edit]


  • Edward Kruk, Divorce and Disengagement: Patterns of Fatherhood Within and Beyond Marriage, Halifax: Fernwood Publishing, 1993.
  • Edward Kruk, Mediation and Conflict Resolution in Social Work and the Human Services, Chicago: Nelson-Hall, 1997.
  • Edward Kruk, Divorced Fathers: Children's Needs and Parental Responsibilities, Halifax: Fernwood Publishing, 2011.
  • Edward Kruk, The Equal Parent Presumption: Social Justice in the Legal Determination of Parenting After Divorce, Montreal/Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press, 2013.

Scientific articles[edit]

Popular press[edit]


  1. ^ Edward Kruk, Biography
  2. ^ Kruk E. Psychological and structural factors contributing to the disengagement of noncustodial fathers after divorce. Family Court Review. 1992 Jan;30(1):81-101.
  3. ^ Kruk E. The disengaged noncustodial father: Implications for social work practice with the divorced family. Social work. 1994 Jan 1;39(1):15-25.
  4. ^ Kruk E. The grief reaction of noncustodial fathers subsequent to divorce. Men's Studies Review. 1991;8(2):17-21.
  5. ^ Edward Kruk, Father Absence, Father Deficit, Father Hunger: The Vital Importance of Paternal Presence in Children's Lives, Psychology Today, May 23, 2012.
  6. ^ Kruk, E. (2013). The Equal Parent Presumption: Social Justice in the Legal Determination of Parenting After Divorce. Montreal/Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press.
  7. ^ Edward Kruk, The Voices of Children of Divorce: Listening to the real experts on the "best interests of the child", Psychology Today, November 12, 2013.
  8. ^ Kruk E, Collateral Damage: The Lived Experiences of Divorced Mothers Without Custody. Journal of Divorce and Remarriage, 2010:51,526-543.
  9. ^ Kruk, E. (2015). The Lived Experiences of Non-custodial Parents in Canada: A Comparison of Mothers and Fathers. International Journal for Family Research and Policy, 1 (1), 80-95.
  10. ^ Edward Kruk, "Co parenting as a Women's Rights Issue: The hidden problem of maternal alienation from children's lives", Psychology Today, February 24, 2018.
  11. ^ Kruk E. Arguments Against a Presumption of Shared Physical Custody in Family Law. Journal of Divorce & Remarriage. 2018 Jul 4;59(5):388-400.
  12. ^ Edward Kruk (October 10, 2018). "Countering Arguments Against Shared Parenting in Family Law: Have we reached a tipping point in the child custody debate?". Psychology Today.
  13. ^ Kruk E, Hall BL. The disengagement of paternal grandparents subsequent to divorce. Journal of Divorce & Remarriage. 1995 Sep 7;23(1-2):131-48.
  14. ^ Edward Kruk, "Grandparents Affected by Adult Child Divorce: Responding to the trauma of grandparental alienation", Psychology Today, March 15, 2017.
  15. ^ Edward Kruk, "Grandparent Visitation Disputes: Multigenerational Approaches to Family Mediation", Mediation Quarterly, 1994.
  16. ^ Harman JJ, Kruk E, Hines DA. Parental alienating behaviors: An unacknowledged form of family violence. Psychological bulletin. 2018, 144:1275.
  17. ^ Kruk E. Divorced Fathers at Risk of Parental Alienation: Practice and Policy Guidelines for Enhancing Paternal Responsibility. New Male Studies. 2016 Mar 1;5(1).
  18. ^ Kruk E, "Parental Alienation: What Is the Solution? A call to action to combat and eliminate parental alienation", Psychology Today, November 16, 2017.
  19. ^ "Parental Alienation as Child Abuse and Family Violence". Psychology Today. Retrieved 2019-06-28.
  20. ^ Edward Kruk, "Co-Parenting After Divorce: A child-centered approach to parental separation", Psychology Today
  21. ^ John Seaman, "Parent's deployment can do harm to children", The Salt Lake Tribune, January 6, 2019
  22. ^ Jason Proctor, "Mother battles daycare after operator refers to children in 'inappropriate manner'", Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, November 7, 2018.
  23. ^ Michelle Jones, "Avoid the woozles and zombies of shared parenting", Daily Herald, February 13, 2018.
  24. ^ Terry Brennan, "The establishment creates fatherless kids", The Daily Caller, March 26, 2018.
  25. ^ "Η Κοκκινοσκουφίτσα αλλιώς και ένα σχόλιο για το διαζύγιο σε μια έκθεση", Click at Life, January 29, 2019 (in Greek).
  26. ^ Barbara Kay, "Shared parenting after separation – Canadians want it, but Bill C-78 stubbornly clings to outdated winner-takes-all model", The Post Millennial, November 23, 2018.
  27. ^ Megan McNulty, "How to make your children feel comfortable around both parents after divorce", Deseret News, May 22, 2016
  28. ^ Aileen McConville, "Fathers, Where Are You? Perilous For Policy Makers to Ignore Impact of Fatherlessness On Sexuality of Teen Girls/Young Women", The Gospel Herald, January 12, 2006.
  29. ^ Robert Franklin, "Children Need Both Parents Even after Divorce", The National Review, May 18, 2015.
  30. ^ Martin Henry, "The cost of absent fathers", The Jamaica Gleaner, May 26, 2013.
  31. ^ Robert Franklin, "Gov. Scott fails children, parents with veto of alimony bill", The Sun Sentinel, April 19, 2016.
  32. ^ Neil Lyndon, "We must stop turning children against divorced fathers", The Telegraph, January 20, 2015.
  33. ^ Céu Neves, "Mais e melhor formação para técnicos da área da família", Diário de Notícias, May 13, 2016 (in Portuguese)
  34. ^ J.L.,"Violencia, drogas, suicidio..: 8 efectos negativos para los niños de crecer sin una figura paterna", Religión en Libertad, May 25, 2017 (in Spanish).
  35. ^ Karen Schärer, Wenn Scheidungskinder sowohl bei "Papa wie bei Mama zu Hause sind", Aargauer Zeitung, March 12, 2014 (in German).
  36. ^ Birutė van der Weg-Bražiūnienė, "Po audringų reakcijų sulaukusio straipsnio pasipiktino: ko siekia D. Šakalienė?", Delfi, May 13, 2016, (in Lithuanian),
  37. ^ Yannis Paparrigopoulos, "Συνεπιμέλεια: Πρέπει να ακούσουμε την επιστήμη", News 247, April 12, 2017 (in Greek)
  38. ^ Matts Hertsberg, "Även pappor måste få skydda sina barn", Aftonbladet, January 4, 2019 (in Swedish).
  39. ^ "더 큰 불화의 씨앗 '부모 따돌림', 어떻게 대처할까?", Fam Times, March 15, 2018 (in Korean).

External links[edit]