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Events & Convening

Convening thought leadership in issues affecting children.
UPCOMING

Ending Child Labour

As progress on child labour has stalled and absolute numbers of children engaged in child labour increase, Leading Minds Online asks the experts: How can we get progress back on track and prevent this worst-case scenario?
UPCOMING

Pathways toward an education that leaves no one behind

16 June 2021 - Ahead of the G20 Education Ministers meeting and informed by ODI’s upcoming publication, ‘Pathways towards quality primary education: improving completion and learning outcomes’, we bring together a group of experts to examine successful reforms that have brought vulnerable children to the forefront of policy implementation and consider what is needed to push the agenda forward.

 

Speakers:

Susan Nicolai
Chair – Senior Research Fellow, Equity and Social Policy, ODI and Director of Research, EdTech Hub

Rukmini Banerji
Panellist – CEO, Pratham Education Foundation

Matt Brossard
Panellist – Chief, READ (Research on Education And Development) Unit, UNICEF Innocenti

Shem Bodo
Panellist – Senior Programs Officer, Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA)

José Manuel Roche
Panellist – Policy Advisor, Senior Analyst and Evaluator in International Development, Consultant

Moizza Binat Sarwar
Panellist – Research Fellow, Equity and Social Policy, ODI

Vaccines: Doses, Distribution and Bridging the Great Divide

The COVID Vaccine Race has been nothing short of a scientific triumph. In just under a year the unimaginable has happened, with not just one but several different vaccines tested, transported and delivered to millions around the world to protect them against a virus that has brought the world to a standstill.

But the global rollout has not been without its travails and has highlighted long-standing inequities between wealthy and less affluent countries. With demand for COVID vaccines outstripping supply, concerns over possible side effects, and new variants of the virus emerging, the vaccine rollout has hit a massive speedbump. Equitable and sustainable solutions to the COVID pandemic have never been more pressing.

To mark World Immunization Week and address the global COVID vaccine challenge, UNICEF Innocenti’s Leading Minds will ask the high level panel how we keep up the momentum of the vaccine race while leaving no one behind; solutions to simplify complex trade barriers on intellectual property rights and technology transfer; and how can we develop vaccine manufacturing capacity where it is needed most.

Register here

The Governments of Norway and South Africa are co-leads of the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator whose purpose is to foster an equitable distribution of COVID-19 tools, particularly to those who need them most, and the fair allocation for COVID-19 vaccines through COVAX which should not be determined by where they live.

Panelists:

Register here

Gender-sensitive social protection

The pandemic has exposed the fault lines in social, political and economic systems and demonstrates the need for critical investment in robust social protection frameworks that reduce the impact of shocks, particularly on the most vulnerable. Women and marginalized groups are disproportionately affected by school closures, unpaid care work, gender-based violence and unemployment, and we need to consider the long-term implications of the pandemic’s gendered impacts.

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted how gender interacts with age, disability, caste, race and class to influence educational attainment, care provision, livelihood security, technological accessibility, healthcare availability and economic independence. This webinar has discussed the political economy of gender-sensitive social protection and drawn upon empirical research in various countries to outline recommendations for a gender-sensitive social protection system drawing from the lessons of the pandemic.
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Latest events

COVID and the Looming Debt Crisis
Time is fast ticking for a looming debt crisis that threatens to decimate decades of progress for children.

The debt crisis is likely to hit two-thirds of the world’s population. Even before the pandemic 1 in 8 countries spent more on debt than on education, health and social spending combined. And African countries are already spending three times more on debt repayments to banks and private lenders than it would cost to vaccinate the entire continent against Covid-19.
So how can this ticking time bomb be defused?

To coincide with the release of an important policy brief from UNICEF on the debt crisis, Leading Minds will ask the expert panelists:
How do we stop mortgaging children’s futures?
Can debt relief measures turn this tide?
#BOURE2020 webinar series
From 2014 to 2018, more than 70,000 unaccompanied and separated children arrived in Italy by sea. To better understand how to ensure their protection and social inclusion, this research presents an overview of trends and possible pathways to adult life for this group of children in Italy. Children’s voices are amplified by the participatory and youth-led approach, allowing them to express their views on decisions that affect them personally.
Preventing Family Violence
Parenting and caregiving programmes offer a promising pathway to improving gender inequality as well as preventing both intimate partner violence (IPV) and violence against children (VAC) in the home. In this webinar, we highlight key findings and recommendations from parenting programmes that apply a gender-transformative approach to address IPV and VAC together and reflect on how this evidence has been used to strengthen interventions.
Research on violence against children during the COVID-19 pandemic
Several months into the COVID-19 pandemic, researchers across the globe are attempting to find out how the health and socioeconomic crisis brought about by the coronavirus is affecting children’s exposure to violence. Four articles published in the Child Abuse and Neglect Journal provide valuable insights.

On Tuesday 16th March at 13:00 CET, UNICEF Office of Research-Innocenti presents its 3rd webinar on the research on violence against children during the COVID-19 pandemic as part of the webinar series on Violence against children & COVID-19.
Modelling the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on violent discipline against children

Several months into the COVID-19 pandemic, researchers across the globe are attempting to find out how the health and socioeconomic crisis brought about by the coronavirus is affecting children’s exposure to violence. Four articles published in the Child Abuse and Neglect Journal provide valuable insights.

On Tuesday 23rd March at 13:00 CET, UNICEF Office of Research-Innocenti presents its 4th webinar on the modelled effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on violent discipline against children as part of the webinar series on Violence against children & COVID-19.

 


Special focus on Sub-Saharan Africa
It was expected to be the worst hit, but instead Africa is gaining praise for being amongst the best and waging an effective campaign against the COVID pandemic. The youngest continent on earth, with the average age just 18 years old, sub-Saharan Africa has experienced only a fraction of the death toll elsewhere in the world.

While Africa may be winning the numbers game, it has come at a massive cost and the real losses are only just being counted. Among them 250 million more children out of school; a loss of more than 6% of economic growth throwing the region into its first-ever economic recession. Added to the climate crisis that is making vast swathes of the continent unlivable, a perfect storm is looming. With aid budgets shrinking in donor countries, can Africa benefit from its own demographic dividend to find African solutions?

We ask our panelists if youth leadership today will bring a brighter tomorrow on poverty, climate action and governance and we explore some out-of-the-box approaches for the region to avoid financial ruin.

On Thursday 3rd December at 15:00 CET | 16:00-17:00 Central African Time EST, UNICEF Office of Research-Innocenti presented its 10th and last Leading Minds for 2020 with a special focus on Sub-Saharan Africa.
Education Reforms in Global Context: Policy & Practice
Leaders and experts from across the globe will discuss the efforts of international organizations, research institutes and governments to ensure the provision of quality education for all children. COVID-19 has added another layer of challenges vis-a-vis equity, learning and governance. How are governments responding to the COVID-19 educational disruption? What role are international organizations playing in this regard? Is Edtech an effective solution? What kind of research is being conducted to help the decision makers? Are policy makers and development practitioners using evidence to inform policy and practice? What are the key challenges facing education today, and how can different stakeholders join hands to resolve them effectively? We will be discussing all this and more with our panel of high-level experts.
Beyond Masks: A Policy Panel Discussion
UNICEF Innocenti’s new report – Beyond Masks: Societal impacts of COVID-19 and accelerated solutions for children and adolescents – offers a comprehensive picture of the health, economic, and social impacts of the pandemic, and its implications for children and adolescents. The report examines evidence from the current crisis, examines past health crises such as HIV/AIDS, SARS and Ebola to provide insights into the current one, and proposes proven and promising solutions.
What have we learnt? Overview of findings from a survey of ministries of education on national responses to COVID-19

COVID-19, the Infodemic, & Fake News

 

This golden age of innovation, with a flourishing of new technologies and online platforms, has created extraordinary opportunities for children and young people to enrich their knowledge and information, their social networks, and their solidarity and civic activism like never before. But those same technologies are used, abused and misused to promote fake messages and harm - leading to hate speech, racism, and hostility with often dangerous consequences to democracies, mental health and children and young people.

The infodemic that has spread at the same rate as the COVID pandemic has brought this into sharp relief. Why now, why has this exploded in 2020 with data being exploited at an unprecedented level?

How can children and young people develop the ability to decipher disinformation and misinformation?

 

COVID-19 & the Climate Crisis
On Thursday 22 October at 15:00 CET | 09:00 EST, UNICEF Office of Research-Innocenti presents its eighth Leading Minds Online webinar ‘What the Experts Say - Coronavirus and Children' on COVID-19 and the Climate Crisis.
COVID-19 & Child Health
On Thursday 1 October at 15:00 CET | 09:00 EST, UNICEF Office of Research-Innocenti presented its seventh Leading Minds Online webcast ‘What the Experts Say - Coronavirus and Children' on Child Health.
Promoting an understanding of the intersection between violence against women and children
On 22 September Alessandra Guedes discusses the intersection between violence against women and children.
COVID-19 & Economic Impact

On Thursday 17 September at 15:00 CET | 09:00 EST, UNICEF Office of Research-Innocenti presented its sixth Leading Minds Online webcast ‘What the Experts Say - Coronavirus and Children' on Economic Impact.

While children and young people have been spared the full force of Coronavirus itself, the worst is yet to come for this generation as the global economy enters unchartered territory. Latest projections from UNICEF and partners indicate that nearly half a billion children in total will live in poor households by the end of 2020.  Lockdowns to control the health crisis are having severe repercussions as they cascade down, with children being twice as likely to end up in poverty than other groups and prospects for young people drastically reduced.

Just in Europe and north America alone some 90 million full-time jobs were lost in the second quarter, according to the ILO. The COVID-recession not only threatens to erode global development but is predicted to have a broader and deeper impact than the 2008 financial crisis as it hits both supply and demand chains as well as informal sectors across Africa and South Asia.  But does it have to be as bad as it seems? We asked a panel of experts where the economy stands now, what lies ahead and how do we make the best of the worst that is to come for children and young people.

Panelists:

  • Jayati Ghosh, Professor of Economics at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst 
    Jayati has consulted for international organizations including ILO, UNDP, UNCTAD, UN-DESA, UNRISD, and UN Women and is a member of several international commissions. She is also a Professor of Economics at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, USA. Jayati has received several prizes, and she is the Executive Secretary of International Development Economics Associates, an international network of heterodox development economists.

  • Ian Goldin, Professor of Globalisation and Development, Oxford University
    Ian is a Professorial Fellow at Balliol College, Oxford University, Director of the Oxford Martin Programme on Technological and Economic Change, and founding Director of the Oxford Martin School. Ian previously was Vice President of the World Bank and the Group’s Director of Policy, after serving as Chief Executive of the Development Bank of Southern Africa and Economic Advisor to President Nelson Mandela.

  • Sacha Nauta, Editor, Public Policy, The Economist
    Sacha writes across the paper about societal change, looking particularly at how issues around gender and diversity are reshaping business, finance, and economics as well as society at large. She previously wrote for the finance, business, international, and Europe sections. Before joining The Economist, she worked at the United Nations in New York and at Her Majesty’s Treasury in London, where she worked on public spending and European budget negotiations.

  • Joel Kibazo, Africa analyst, former FTI and African Development Bank
    Joel was Managing Director-Africa at international business and communications consultancy FTI Consulting; Director of External Relations & Communications at the African Development Bank, the continent’s premier financial and economic development institution; and Official Spokesperson and Director of Communications & Public Affairs at the Commonwealth Secretariat, the inter-government body serving the 54 nations of the Commonwealth that span the globe.
Child Health and Well-being
On Thursday 16 July at 15:00 CET | 09:00 EST, UNICEF Office of Research-Innocenti will present its sixth Leading Minds Online webcast ‘What the Experts Say - Coronavirus and Children' on Child Health and Well-being. 
Hand Hygiene
On Thursday 2 July at 15:00 CET | 09:00 EST, UNICEF Office of Research-Innocenti will present its fifth Leading Minds Online webcast ‘What the Experts Say - Coronavirus and Children' on Hand Hygiene. 
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