Ethics approval No S181164

Welcome to the research on parents/caregiver's lived experience of parental alienation in a social context for Australian residents.

The Research Team
The research team is made up of the chief investigator/researcher and principal supervisor Dr Dyann Ross (University of the Sunshine Coast), and the lead investigator/researcher Mr Stan Korosi (University of the Sunshine Coast). For further information, please direct your questions to:

  • Chief investigator and principal supervisor: 
         Dr Dyann Ross
         Telephone: 07 5459 4754                                                                         

  • Lead investigator/researcher:
         Mr. Stan Korosi
         Telephone: +61 (0) 457 466 337
1.    Invitation to participate in and collaborate with Research into the Lived Experience of Parental Alienation (PA).

You are invited to participate in and collaborate with research into the experience of parental alienation as a social issue. Parental alienation is defined as the rejection by a child of one parent or care-giver caused by the other parent or care-giver, where the child or children involved have no valid reason for parental rejection.
This research is conducted in partial fulfilment of a social science research PhD by PhD candidate, Mr. Stan Korosi, supervised by Dr Dyann Ross, Faculty of Art, Business and Law, School of Social Science, University of the Sunshine Coast (USC).

2.    What is the purpose of this research?
Parental alienation is considered to be a growing and poorly understood social issue, in contrast to issues such as family violence. It is suggested that family members involved in contexts of parental alienation have particular social experiences that are of interest to this research and which may reveal to society the nature of the social adversity parental alienation causes and create a new way for society to understand the social effects of parental alienation upon alienated parents.

3.    Why should I consider participating in the research?

You may consider participating in the research because:
  • You have particular experience of parental alienation and/or identify as an alienated mother, father or caregiver, and
  • Your experience may meet one of the descriptions of severe, moderate or mild alienation, and
  • You and your children may or may not have reconciled and you have observed and/or experienced changes in your child or children consistent with the descriptions of severe, moderate or mild alienation.

4.    What will I be asked to do?
Firstly, you will be asked to respond anonymously to questionnaires and surveys about your personal and family situation, your social and political views in the context of your experience of parental alienation and about your social experience as a targeted/alienated parent.

Then, when you have completed these questionnaires and surveys, you will also be given the option of volunteering to be involved in face to face interviews.  If you are selected for interviews (up to 90 minutes) then you will be asked to discuss with the lead investigator/researcher your experience of PA in social contexts, such as, but not limited to your family, with friends, at work, engaged in your hobbies or engaging with government, legal or other social institutions.

If you have volunteered for interview, you will be asked for identifying information. The lead investigator/researcher may contact you, using the contact details you have provided. 

5.    Are there any Benefits to my Participation?
There are no direct benefits to your participation. However, indirectly, you may benefit from participating in research in which you will be listened to with empathy and understanding where previously you may have been ignored or misunderstood. Your involvement may assist society and professionals to gain an appreciation of your experience that has not been available previously.
6.    Are there any Risks to my Participation?
Experiences such as parental alienation can be as distressing as family violence, sexual or other forms of relational abuse.  It is considered that there is a low risk that responding to questionnaires, engaging in interviews with the lead investigator/researcher may cause emotional distress and psychological symptoms. 
This research is not a therapeutic setting. We do not want you to be harmed and therefore we ask that you consider not participating if you anticipate an adverse impact to you and/or if you find that discussing your experience may be distressing for you and/or may cause you unwanted and unpleasant psychological symptoms.

Emotional distress and symptoms may take the form of anger, depression, anxiety, sadness that are beyond your usual experience on a day to day basis. If you become distressed at any time, then:

  • You may wish to consult with your medical practitioner or seek immediate assistance from LIFELINE on 13 11 14,
  • You may complete the questionnaires and surveys later, or take a break from interviews, or
  • You may withdraw from any stage of the research without any consequences. If you continue to experience distress, a professional counsellor will be available at no cost to you.

Only de-identified information will be used and published. However, in the event that you volunteer for interview and are selected there is a remote possibility even with your information de-identified and details changed that you and/or others may still be able to recognise your contribution. Although this is considered highly unlikely, it is not possible to determine how likely this is. We will use the information that you have shared responsibly.

However, it is your responsibility to assess your circumstances and decide whether it is acceptable for de-identified information about you and/or your situation to be published as part of the research. You will be given choices about how your information is to be used and published in an additional consent form

7.    What if I change my mind during or after the Research?
You may withdraw at any time without question or penalty. If you decide to withdraw from the research and the interview, you agree that the information collected about you up to the point when you withdraw may continue to be processed.

8.    Are there any conflicts of interest that may affect me?
The lead investigator/researcher is the principal of a consulting organisation (Dialogue in Growth Pty. Ltd.) that provides consulting services in the field of parental alienation.
There are no conflicts of interest that may affect you. This is because neither the consulting organisation, (Dialogue in Growth Pty. Ltd.) or the research have any financial interest in, obtains any remuneration from, each other’s activities.
Dialogue in Growth Pty. Ltd may promote the research and invite interested parties to participate but will not undertake any direct recruiting for this research and does not fund the research. Similarly, the Lead investigator/researcher will not direct research participants to Dialogue in Growth Pty. Ltd.
If you are selected for interviews and you are a past or present client of Dialogue in Growth Pty. Ltd, you will not be interviewed about your consultations with Dialogue in Growth Pty. Ltd notwithstanding that the subjects discussed may be similar
9.    Data Collection, Usage, Sharing and Protection Policy
9.1.  What types of Information do you require from me?

9.1.1.   Questionnaires and Surveys only
No identifying information is required when you respond only to survey questionnaires. However, you will be asked for contact information if you elect to receive a summary of the research results.
9.1.2.   Volunteering for and Participation in Interviews
We will require identifying information about you if you volunteer for interview, personal information about you and personal information about your experience with parental alienation if you take part in individual interviews. Identifiable and sensitive information as defined in the Australian Privacy Act, 1988 (Part II, Division I, Section 6) will be collected from you if you are selected for interviews.
Interviews with research participants will be recorded for audio only.
Audio recordings will be transcribed, and you will be given the opportunity to read and correct the transcript to ensure it represents the experiences that you want to convey
Audio recordings, and any notes will be destroyed by secure deletion or destruction after you have had an opportunity to verify the transcript is correct and complete.
Transcripts will be de-identified to the extent possible to minimise or eliminate the possibility of identifying you and the original transcript containing identifiable information will be destroyed.
9.1.3.   How will this information be treated during the research?
Your information will be de-identified, any identifiable information about you will be destroyed by non-recoverable means (secure shredding, secure deletion).
No identifiable information about you will be stored or kept.

9.1.4.   What will happen to my information after the research is completed?
De-identified information will be retained for future research into this phenomenon.
9.1.5.   How will my Information be shared?
The lead investigator/researcher will collect information in the form of aggregated questionnaire and survey responses, and de-identified, non-sensitive interview transcripts. This comprises a dataset.
You are providing consent to enable the dataset to be stored in an approved data repository. Access to the repository may be provided to other investigators and/or institutions undertaking research in a related field on the condition that they consent to the same terms and conditions for collection, usage and protection of data as for this research.
The research design will not allow linkages and associations to be made between anonymous responses to questionnaires and surveys and personal and sensitive information provided by you to the lead investigator/researcher if you have volunteered for interviews.
9.1.6.   How will my Information be protected?
Interview recordings contain identifying and sensitive information as defined in the Australian Privacy Act, 1988 (Part II, Division I, Section 6). Your information will be kept in locked filing cabinets and on password protected computer systems in accordance with USC’s Research Data Management Policy, until they are transcribed. Identifying details and contextual information will be removed to the extent that the integrity of the interview for the purpose of the research is preserved and that you cannot be identified. Identifying information will be destroyed by secure shredding and deletion where possible.
10.    How will the results of this research be published?
Results and outcomes will be published in non-identifiable form in peer reviewed journals.
11.    What if I have questions or complaints about this research?
In the first instance please refer your questions to the lead investigator/researcher.
If you have any complaints about the way this research project is being conducted, you can raise them with the lead Investigator or the chief investigator.  If you prefer an independent person, contact the Chairperson of the USC Human Research Ethics Committee: (c/- Office of Research, University of the Sunshine Coast, Maroochydore DC 4558; telephone (07) 5430 2823; email

We now request your consent to participate in the research. Please respond to the following consent questions. You must answer each question.