(28 May 2019) In high- and middle-income countries, and increasingly also in low-income countries, many children’s activities are underpinned by internet and mobile phone access in one way or another. Across truly diverse domestic, cultural and geographic contexts, many children now use digital and online technologies as part of their everyday lives.
Members of Global Kids Online (GKO), an international research project supporting rigourous cross-national evidence generation on children’s internet use, gathered at UNICEF Innocenti this week. The partnership will review evidence from 11 countries on children’s digital access, use, skills and risks in preparation for the latest Global Kids Online research report to be published in late 2019.
“Among many other things, members of the GKO research network will review progress on our next substantive report, now in the final stages of analytical work,” said Daniel Kardefelt-Winther, lead researcher on child internet use at UNICEF Innocenti. “We will discuss the latest findings and gather feedback on how best to shape the major recommendations of the report.” Country reports from Albania, Ghana, New Zealand, the Philippines and Uruguay will be presented.
The network will also discuss what is needed to expand and strengthen global data-gathering activities on children’s internet use; how to leverage evidence for research uptake and policy impact; and will hear about latest progress of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child ‘General Comment on Child Rights in the Digital Environment.’
A key new development to be discussed is the upcoming implementation of GKO surveys in 14 countries in Africa and South East Asia under the new ‘Disrupting Harm’ project, funded by the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children and carried out jointly by UNICEF Innocenti, ECPAT International and INTERPOL. The Disrupting Harm project aims to better understand the risks of violence and sexual exploitation that children face online.
“This meeting is also an important opportunity for GKO partners to share experiences, learn from each other and help form new partnerships,” said Kardefelt-Winther. “Bringing experts and practitioners from around the world together has always been a key objective of our network”