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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

UNDER DEVELOPMENT UNICEF Innocenti's curated library of COVID-19 + Children research

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Reimagining girls’ education: solutions to keep girls learning in emergencies
Institution: *UNICEF
Published: February 2021

This report presents an empirical overview of what works to support learning outcomes for girls in emergencies. Research shows that girls in emergencies are disadvantaged at all stages of education and are more likely to be out-of-school than in non-emergency settings. Girls are also struggling to learn. This solutions book seeks to highlight promising evidence-based actions in education for decision makers who are designing and implementing interventions to support girls’ education in low and middle-income country humanitarian settings and settings where education has been interrupted by the COVID‑19 pandemic. It documents practical examples of approaches that have been or are being tested, and from which lessons can be drawn. The overarching aim is that this evidence be used to inform programming in crises and support diverse stakeholders in mitigating the impact of emergencies on girls’ education.

Progress toward ending child marriage over the last decade: a missed opportunity to deliver for girls
Institution: Save the Children
Published: February 2021

Compared to the previous generation, the incidence of child marriage worldwide has declined. However, strides forward have suffered from substantial limitations. At the global level, child marriage is still too widespread, and progress too slow, to meet the SDG target in 2030. At the regional level, some areas have achieved remarkable progress, while others are lagging behind. Worryingly, in the majority of cases, progress over the past decade (2010-2020) has not matched advancements achieved in the decade prior (2000-2010). At the country level, inclusive progress hasn’t always materialized: in a number of countries, gaps are widening not only between wealth groups, but also on the basis of residence. In a nutshell, progress has been unevenly distributed not only across time, but also across geographies, with stark divides both among and within countries. COVID-19 is expected to have a damaging impact on child protection, including according to Save the Children’s own projections. Urgent efforts are needed to guarantee girls’ rights and prevent devastating setbacks. In the longer term, more research is needed to understand what drives child marriage, so as to tackle it more effectively in different regions.

Exploring resource scarcity and contextual influences on wellbeing among young refugees in Bidi Bidi refugee settlement, Uganda: findings from a qualitative study

AUTHOR(S)
Carmen H. Logie; Moses Okumu; Maya Latif (et al.)

Published: January 2021   Journal: Conflict and Health
Contextual factors including poverty and inequitable gender norms harm refugee adolescent and youths’ wellbeing. Our study focused on Bidi Bidi refugee settlement that hosts more than 230,000 of Uganda’s 1.4 million refugees. We explored contextual factors associated with wellbeing among refugee adolescents and youth aged 16–24 in Bidi Bidi refugee settlement.
The impact of closing schools on working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic: evidence using panel data from Japan

AUTHOR(S)
Eiji Yamamura; Yoshiro Tsustsui

Published: January 2021   Journal: Review of Economics of the Household
COVID-19 has led to the closure of various schools in Japan to cope with the pandemic. This study explores how school closure influences parents’ work style based on short panel data for the period of school closure from mid-March to mid-April 2020. Specifically, it analyzes how the presence of their children influences parents’ work at home and examines how the effect differs by the parent’s gender.
Parental well-being in times of Covid-19 in Germany

AUTHOR(S)
Mathias Huebener; Sevrin Waights; C. Katharina Spiess (et al.)

Published: January 2021   Journal: Review of Economics of the Household
This study examines the effects of Covid-19 and related restrictions on individuals with dependent children in Germany. It specifically focuses on the role of day care center and school closures, which may be regarded as a “disruptive exogenous shock” to family life. It makes use of a novel representative survey of parental well-being collected in May and June 2020 in Germany, when schools and day care centers were closed but while other measures had been relaxed and new infections were low. In this descriptive analysis, well-being during this period with a pre-crisis period for different groups is compared.
Gender differences in couples’ division of childcare, work and mental health during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Gema Zamarro; María J. Prados

Published: January 2021   Journal: Review of Economics of the Household
The current COVID-19 crisis, with its associated school and daycare closures as well as social-distancing requirements, has the potential to magnify gender differences both in terms of childcare arrangements within the household and at work. This study used data from a nationally representative sample of the United States from the Understanding Coronavirus in America tracking survey to understand gender differences within households on the impact of the COVID-19 crisis. It also studied how fathers and mothers are coping with this crisis in terms of childcare provision, employment, working arrangements, and psychological distress levels.
Assessment of parent-child relationship in Covid-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Halil Uzun; Nezahat Hamiden Karaca; Şermin Metin

Published: January 2021   Journal: Children and Youth Services Review
COVID-19, which emerged in 2019 and spread rapidly around the world, has made a great change in the daily lives of individuals and has created a basis for social-emotional-psychological problems. It is thought that the individuals that are affected by this situation the most are children, and therefore it will be significant to re-examine the factors of the epidemic experienced today affecting the family-child relationship. Accordingly, present study aims to evaluate the parent–child relationship during the pandemic process in terms of a number of variables. This is a study aimed at describing the relationship of parents with children between the ages of 4–6, with their children during the Covid-19 process, based on the views of parents.
A gendered pandemic: childcare, homeschooling, and parents' employment during COVID‐19

AUTHOR(S)
Richard J. Petts; Daniel L. Carlson; Joanna R. Pepin

Published: December 2020   Journal: Gender, Work and Organization
The COVID‐19 pandemic has dramatically affected employment, particularly for mothers. Many believe that the loss of childcare and homeschooling requirements are key contributors to this trend, but previous work has been unable to test these hypotheses due to data limitations. This study uses novel data from 989 partnered, US parents to empirically examine whether the loss of childcare and new homeschooling demands are associated with employment outcomes early in the pandemic.
The impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak response on women and girls in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Institution: *UNICEF
Published: December 2020
Lessons learned from past public health crises shed light on the potential consequences of epidemics, not only on the health of women and girls, but on all aspects of their lives. Today, faced with COVID-19, only 52% of countries provide sex-disaggregated data on morbidity and mortality related to COVID-19. Analyses of the broader impacts of the pandemic and the public health measures put in place to control its spread on women and girls are still too scarce.
Violence against women and girls and COVID-19 in the Arab region
Institution: United Nations
Published: December 2020
The policy brief is based on the collective work of United Nations agencies active in the Arab region. Launched during the 16 days of activism against gender-based violence, the policy brief examines quantitative and qualitative data as well as the provision of services for survivors of violence during the outbreak of COVID-19. Key findings from the brief include noticeable increase in the prevalence of violence in all its forms during the pandemic. The risks are further compounded for vulnerable population including women and girls with disabilities, women refugees and internally displaced persons, women in prisons and detention centres among others. The policy brief continues to examine the various service provision examining its accessibility, availability, and quality. Finally, the policy brief provides recommendations to governments, humanitarian organisations and UN agencies.
Pre-pandemic influences on Kenyan girls’ transitions to adulthood during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Meghan Bellerose; Maryama Diaw; Jessie Pinchof (et al.)

Published: December 2020   Journal: Girlhood Studies
COVID-19 containment measures have left adolescent girls in Nairobi, Kenya vulnerable to negative educational, economic, and secondary health outcomes that threaten their safe transitions into adulthood. In June 2020, the Population Council conducted phone-based surveys with 856 girls aged between 10 and 19 in 5 informal settlements who had been surveyed prior to COVID-19 as part of five longitudinal studies. We performed bivariate and multivariable logistic regression analyses to assess the relationship between COVID-19 outcomes and potential protective or risk factors. We found that younger girls are experiencing high levels of food insecurity and difficulty learning from home during school closures, while many older girls face the immediate risk of dropping out of school permanently and have been forgoing needed health services.
Crisis of care and education in the early years: paradoxical moments in the global pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
I-Fang Lee

Published: December 2020   Journal: Global Studies of Childhood
Care in the early years entails more than childcare. This paper has three major sections. In the first section, I begin with an introduction and a quick overview of the ECEC system in Australia. This snapshot of the Australian ECEC system presents a messy map of the care and education system for young children under a neoliberal political economy to elucidate what this may mean in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. With this contextual background of the ECEC system in Australia, in the second section I discuss my theoretical, ethical, political, ontological, and epistemological positioning when re-imagining and reconceptualizing what a socially just ECEC landscape might look like through the lens of a feminism approach. This onto-epistemological discussion explains the shift toward a feminist approach and how this enables me to (re)think about care and education in the early years differently. Taking up this different set of analytical tools with a post-structural sensibility of the politics of caring, in the third section, I continue on to critical analyses and discussions, highlighting the paradoxes of care and education in the early years. A key aim of this paper is to un-settle the taken-for-granted ways of thinking and talking about ECEC in Australia.
Child marriage in COVID-19 contexts: disruptions, alternative approaches and building programme resilience
Institution: UNFPA - United Nations Population Fund, *UNICEF
Published: December 2020
This brief has been developed jointly by UNFPA and UNICEF regional offices in Eastern and Southern Africa. It provides an overview of child marriage in the region, particularly in the context of COVID-19, as well as an analysis of disruptions to child marriage programmes. The brief also describes alternatives to traditional programmatic work as a means to overcome challenges presented by COVID-19. It proposes a way forward for child marriage programming during the COVID-19 response and recovery phases, as well as outlining implications for future programming, including the need to strengthen programme resilience
Gender-based violence during the COVID-19 pandemic response in Italy.

AUTHOR(S)
Rebecca Lundin; Benedetta Armocida; Paola Sdao (et al.)

Published: December 2020   Journal: Journal of Global Health
Gender-based violence (GBV), with one out of three women worldwide experiencing violence in their lifetime, has been defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a “global public health problem of epidemic proportions”. During the current COVID-19 pandemic, the WHO and other international authorities have warned about the increased risk of GBV related to more time spent indoors, isolation from social and protective networks, and greater social and economic stress re-lated to both the epidemic and response measures. In fact, since the onset of the COVID-19 outbreak, reports from many countries including France, Ger-many, Spain, the United Kingdom, Cyprus, Argentina, Singapore, Canada, and the United States indicate that violence against women has increase.
Re-imagining play spaces in early childhood education: supporting girls’ motive orientation to STEM in times of COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Marilyn Fleer

Published: November 2020   Journal: Journal of Early Childhood Research
In unprecedented times, the global community is calling for greater knowledge and engagement in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to support the decision making and practices of the general community. COVID-19 has highlighted this pressing need and inviting a ‘new normal’. But STEM is not the core business of early childhood. What role can the early childhood education research community take? This paper reports on a cultural-historical study that investigated how a Conceptual PlayWorld changed the traditional Froebelian play areas to support girls’ play and motives in STEM. The question guiding that study was how could a Conceptual PlayWorld overcome the problems previously identified in the literature on girls’ inclusion in STEM activities in preschools.
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UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.

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COVID-19 & Children: Rapid Research Response

UNICEF Innocenti is mobilizing a rapid research response in line with UNICEF’s global response to the COVID-19 crisis. The initiatives we’ve begun will provide the broad range of evidence needed to inform our work to scale up rapid assessment, develop urgent mitigating strategies in programming and advocacy, and preparation of interventions to respond to the medium and longer-term consequences of the COVID-19 crisis. The research projects cover a rapid review of evidence, education analysis, and social and economic policies.