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In response to the fast pace of technological development, the Global Kids Online network was created as an international research partnership aiming to develop a rigorous, cross-national evidence base on children’s online risks, opportunities and rights.

UNICEF Innocenti and the London School of Economics are convening the second Global Kids Online network meeting in London. The meeting gathers current and potential international research partners. Pilot partner countries (Argentina, South Africa, Philippines and Serbia) will be presenting the lessons learned from conducting research on children’s internet use in different countries, complemented by local analysis, findings and case study examples.

The network will discuss the findings, prepare for cross-national comparison of trends and begin drafting upcoming policy recommendations for the launch of the toolkit in late 2016. The toolkit will contain 12 methodological briefs, authored by externally contracted experts, with the purpose of providing insights into the complex area of children’s internet use, complete with topical case studies. The case studies will be discussed during the London meeting by drawing on the experiences of the partner countries’ pilot projects.

Discussions will also be held on the accession criteria for new countries who are looking to join the network, with the aim of ensuring that future research supported by the Global Kids Online network remains methodologically robust, adheres to ethical standards and produces findings of high quality.

The March 2016 meeting hosts close to 40 academics and UNICEF staff from 14 different countries, with 9 different UNICEF Offices represented (Argentina, South Africa, Serbia, the Philippines, Montenegro, India, Ghana, New York HQ and the Office of Research). The meeting will bring together countries that are already part of the Global Kids Online network with countries that are looking to conduct research on children’s internet use in the near future and who want to learn from and draw on the expertise of the network. A report from the meeting will be published on the UNICEF Innocenti Child Rights in the Digital Age project website shortly after the meeting