World's richest countries grappling with children’s reading and math skills, mental well-being and obesity
FLORENCE/NEW YORK, 3 September 2020 – Suicide, unhappiness, obesity and poor social and academic skills have become far-too-common features of childhood in high-income countries, according to the latest Report Card issued today by the UNICEF Office of Research – Innocenti. UNICEF’s Report Card Series – now running for 20 years – uses comparable national data to rank EU and OECD countries on childhood. Worlds of Influence: Understanding what shapes child well-being in rich countries uses pre-COVID-19 data and features a league table according to children’s mental and physical health and academic and social skill-set. Based on these indicators the Netherlands, Denmark and Norway rank as the top three places to be a child among wealthy countries.
5 Questions on the Impact of Pandemics and Epidemics on Child Protection
(23 July 2020) A new rapid review from UNICEF Innocenti collects and synthesizes the available evidence on the impacts of COVID-19 and previous pandemics, epidemics, and their control measures on child protection and offers key lessons learned for global and national responses to COVID-19 and recommendations for future research priorities.
40 million children miss out on early education in critical pre-school year due to COVID-19
PRESS RELEASE New York, 22 July 2020 – At least 40 million children worldwide have missed out on early childhood education in their critical pre-school year as COVID-19 shuttered childcare and early education facilities, according to a new research brief published today by UNICEF. Produced by UNICEF’s Office of Research – Innocenti, the research brief looks at the state of childcare and early childhood education globally and includes an analysis of the impact of widespread COVID-19 closures of these vital family services.
UN agencies issue joint statement on prevention of violence against women and girls in the context of COVID-19
(Florence, 24 June 2020) Nine UN agencies today jointly released a statement providing critical guidance on addressing worrisome rising levels of violence against women and girls during the COVID-19 pandemic. The statement follows the UN Secretary General’s widely supported appeal [link] for nations to prioritize prevention and redress of violence against women and girls as a central part of their national pandemic response plans.
Evidence review of past health and economic crises provides lessons for a sustainable pandemic response
The study reviews economic policy and social protection responses to the major past health and economic crises in order to provide guidance to inform the initial and long-term public policy responses to COVID-19.
Remote data collection on violence against children during COVID-19: A conversation with experts on research priorities, measurement and ethics (Part 2)
Global stakeholders have raised concerns about the implications of COVID-19 for violence against children (VAC). An increased risk of violence could result from a variety of compounding structural, interpersonal and individual-level risk factors, including the increased economic strain placed on families, stay-at-home orders, school closures and other COVID-19 response measures. Over 165 governments have urged the UN to “Protect our Children” and the leaders of 22 organizations have called for the need to integrate measures to protect children from violence in COVID-19 response plans. To guide action on preventing and responding to violence, eight UN agencies outlined a child rights and multi-sectoral framework agenda for action. Initial and preliminary evidence on COVID-19 and VAC suggests that the pandemic could affect not only the risks of violence, but also help-seeking behavior and access to violence-related services.
UNICEF’s New Online Series Convenes Leading Minds to Discuss Children & COVID-19
COVID-19 has unleashed a wave of international concern over increasing violence inside the home. Across the globe, countries are expanding helplines and online support platforms as media reporting on family violence worldwide rises. The UN secretary general has called for an urgent domestic violence ‘ceasefire.’ UNICEF Innocenti’s Leading Minds Conference has been recast this year as a bi-weekly series of high-level panel discussions featuring top global experts on the theme: Coronavirus and Children: What the experts say. The next and second panel in the series will focus on violence in the home on 21 MAY 2020, 9:00 EST. [REGISTER HERE]
Remote data collection on violence against women during COVID-19: A conversation with experts on ethics, measurement & research priorities (Part 1)
Violence against women (VAW) is a priority global concern especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Supporting survivors during this time requires understanding the characteristics and magnitude of violence and effectiveness of responses – for which we need rigorous research. Researchers are well positioned to contribute to policy dialogue, drawing both on past evidence to inform critical pandemic responses, as well as studying dynamics as they unfold to inform real-time decisions and future pandemics.
Secondary effects of COVID-19 on children in all countries will be unprecedented, experts warn
(Florence, 4 May 2020) A new Innocenti Discussion Paper, COVID-19 and children in the North and in the South, by Giovanni Andrea Cornia, Richard Jolly and Frances Stewart articulates important plausible theories about the direct and indirect impacts on children in both high- and low-income countries
Five years to end child labour: education could be the solution
Reshmi Prabhu (12) in a cotton field in Karnatarka, India. She previously worked in the fields before being enrolled in school for the first time this year. (21 April 2020) Despite substantial progress in reducing the number of children involved in child labour, there are still an estimated 10.8 million child labourers India and Bangladesh. Sustainable Development Goal 8.7 aims to end child labour by 2025. Urgent action is needed to achieve this. In response to this challenge, UNICEF Innocenti has begun a new four-year research project to identify effective educational strategies to address child labour in India and Bangladesh.FIND OUT MORE ABOUT OUR NEW RESEARCH PROJECT EXPLORING THE LINKS BETWEEN CHILD LABOUR AND EDUCATIONTo kick-off the project, which is funded with UK aid from the UK government, an inception workshop was held in New Delhi (India) in November 2019. During the workshop, available evidence on child labour and education was discussed and research gaps were identified. Eleven technical experts on child labour and education from India and Bangladesh presented research to representatives from the ILO, World Bank, DFID, local NGOs, research institutes, and UNICEF Regional Office for South Asia and Country Offices (India and Bangladesh).“Child labour continues to be a key indicator of how well the world is doing on child rights and in creating a strong foundation for child well-being and human development,” said UNICEF Innocenti’s Chief of Child Rights and Child Protection, Ramya Subrahmanian. “In the context of the current pandemic, prolonged school closures can significantly impact school dropout and child labour, and evidence and policy actions need to recognise and address this risk. The inception workshop has helped us develop a platform for engagement with national experts and international partners on key priorities and questions in a dynamic and changing context.”Patterns and trends in child labour and schoolingKabir Uddin from Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics and Ellina Samantroy from VV Giri National Labour Institute provided an overview of the most recent available national data on prevalence and trends in child work, schooling, and their intersections in India and Bangladesh.Patterns & trends in child labour & schooling & their intersections in Bangladesh from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Landscaping prevalence & trends in child labour & schooling and their intersections in India from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Evidence gaps on child labour and schooling in BangladeshBy examining issues of measurement and data availability on child labour and schooling, Zulfiqar Alli from the Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies and Mudit Kapoor from the Indian Statistical Institute identified evidence gaps and new hypotheses for research.Scoping evidence gaps on patterns & trends in child labour & schooling & their intersections in Bangladesh from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Child Labour: Evidence gaps & new hypothesis for research in India from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Worst form of child labourAKM Masud Ali from INCIDIN in Bangladesh and Davuluri Venkateswarlu from Global Research in India reviewed the evidence on forms of child labour, such as slavery and trafficking, that are hidden and especially harmful for children.The Forbidden Terrain of the Worst Form of Child Labour in Bangladesh from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Worst forms of child labour in India with a focus on rural sector from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Linking child labour, schooling, and marriageSajeda Amin from the Population Council and Renu Singh from Young Lives India scoped conceptual and empirical perspectives on the linkages between child labour, schooling, and marriage in Bangladesh and India.Linking Child Labour, Schooling & Marriage: exploring critical intersections from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Scoping the linkages between child labour, schooling & marriage in India from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Linkages between child labour, schooling, and migrationNowreen Yasmin from Noakhali Science and Technology University and Renu Singh from Young Lives India presented the current evidence on the interlinkages between internal migration, child labour, and schooling in Bangladesh and India.Scoping the linkages between internal migration, child labour & schooling in Bangladesh from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Scoping the linkages between internal migration, child labour & schooling in India from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Education strategiesJyotsna Jha from the Centre for Budget and Policy Studies and Samir Ranjan Nath from BRAC Institute for Education and Development presented the evidence on how educational strategies, including vocational training and skills development, address child labour in India and Bangladesh.Landscaping education strategies to address child labour in India from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Landscaping education strategies to address child labour in Bangladesh from UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti Participants at the inception workshop held in New Delhi in November 2019. Find out more about our research project exploring Child Labour and Education in India and Bangladesh. Discover our work on Child Labour.
Preventing the sale and exploitation of children in a rapidly changing world
States must step up their efforts to eradicate the sale and sexual exploitation of children to keep up with evolving risks. The UN Special Rapporteur stressed this message at the Human Rights Council earlier this month, where she released the final report of her six-year tenure. In the report, Ms Maud de Boer-Buquicchio, provides an analysis of key challenges, trends, and recommendations for the way forward.