The Role of Fathers in Supporting Children’s Development

  • Louise J. KeownEmail author
  • Nike Franke
  • Ripi Kaur


This chapter discusses the processes linking fathers and fathers’ parenting in relation to children’s social, emotional, language and cognitive development, and atypical behavioral development. The review also considers the role of indirect influences, such as paternal mental health, the influence of culture, coparenting, and bidirectional influences between parenting and child behaviors. The chapter begins with a brief history of the scientific study of fatherhood and father–child relationships. Current conceptualizations of father involvement and theoretical frameworks for understanding direct and indirect paternal influences on child outcomes are also discussed. The chapter ends with recommendations for future research and some policy and practice implications based on current research evidence.


Father involvement Father–child relationships Children’s development 



The authors declare that they have no disclosure.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Education and Social WorkThe University of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand

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