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Increasing Women’s Representation in School Leadership: A promising path towards improving learning
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Increasing Women’s Representation in School Leadership: A promising path towards improving learning

Emerging evidence shows a positive association between women school leaders and student performance. Some studies suggest women school leaders are more likely than their male counterparts to adopt effective management practices that may contribute to improved outcomes. However, women remain largely underrepresented in school leadership positions, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. This brief presents emerging insights on the association between women school leaders and education outcomes and draws attention to women’s underrepresentation in school leadership roles. It highlights the need for further research on gender and school leadership to identify policies and practices that can be implemented to increase women’s representation and scale high-quality management practices adopted by women leaders to more schools to improve education outcomes for all children.
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Annual Report 2021
Publication

Annual Report 2021

The UNICEF Innocenti Annual Report 2021 highlights the key results achieved in research and evidence to inform policymaking and programming.
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Responsible Innovation in Technology for Children: Digital technology, play and child well-being
Responsible Innovation in Technology for Children: Digital technology, play and child well-being
Published: 2022 Innocenti Research Report

Digital experiences can have significant negative impact on children, exposing them to risks or failing to nurture them adequately. Nevertheless, digital experiences also potentially yield enormous benefits for children, enabling them to learn, to create, to develop friendships, and to build worlds. While global efforts to deepen our understanding of the prevalence and impact of digital risks of harm are burgeoning – a development that is both welcome and necessary – less attention has been paid to understanding and optimizing the benefits that digital technology can provide in supporting children’s rights and their well-being.

Benefits here refer not only to the absence of harm, but also to creating additional positive value. How should we recognize the opportunities and benefits of digital technology for children’s well-being? What is the relationship between the design of digital experiences – in particular, play-centred design – and the well-being of children? What guidance and measures can we use to strengthen the design of digital environments to promote positive outcomes for children? And how can we make sure that children’s insights and needs form the foundation of our work in this space? These questions matter for all those who design and promote digital experiences, to keep children safe and happy, and enable positive development and learning. These questions are particularly relevant as the world shifts its attention to emerging digital technologies and experiences, from artificial intelligence (AI) to the metaverse, and seeks to understand their impact on people and society.

To begin to tackle these questions, UNICEF and the LEGO Group initiated the Responsible Innovation in Technology for Children (RITEC) project in partnership with the Young and Resilient Research Centre at Western Sydney University; the CREATE Lab at New York University; the Graduate Center, City University of New York; the University of Sheffield; the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for the Digital Child; and the Joan Ganz Cooney Center. The research is funded by the LEGO Foundation. The partnership is an international, multi-stakeholder and cross-sectoral collaboration between organizations that believe the design and development of digital technology should support the rights and well-being of children as a primary objective – and that children should have a prominent voice in making this a reality. This project’s primary objective is to develop, with children from around the world, a framework that maps how the design of children’s digital experiences affects their well-being, and to provide guidance as to how informed design choices can promote positive well-being outcomes.

Reopening With Resilience: Lessons from Remote Learning During COVID-19 – South Asia
Reopening With Resilience: Lessons from Remote Learning During COVID-19 – South Asia

AUTHOR(S)
Radhika Nagesh; Frank van Cappelle; Vidur Chopra; Thomas Dreesen

Published: 2021 Innocenti Research Report

COVID-19 school closures in South Asia lasted longer than in any other region. To mitigate subsequent effects, governments and education actors in South Asia provided a range of remote learning modalities.  

This report presents evidence on the reach and effectiveness of these remote learning strategies through a meta-analysis of studies from the region. Large differences in students’ access to connectivity and devices show that high-tech remote learning modalities did not reach all students. Lessons learned indicate that the effectiveness of one-way or low-tech modalities can be enhanced through increased engagement and support from educators. Teachers, parents and caregivers must be supported to help children learn remotely, especially in cases where they must rely on these low-tech remote learning modalities. Formative assessments are needed to understand the scale of lost learning and target responses to remediate this learning loss when schools reopen.   

The Sale and Sexual Exploitation of Children: Digital Technology
The Sale and Sexual Exploitation of Children: Digital Technology
Published: 2020 Miscellanea

As access to Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) increases, so too do the risks posed to children. Popular ICTs, like mobile phones and the internet, can enable and facilitate sexual crimes against children, including the production and dissemination of child sexual abuse materials and the facilitation of child prostitution.

The scale of the problem is difficult to ascertain with precision. However, in 2018 alone, 18.4 million referrals of child sexual abuse material were made by US technology companies to the National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children.

When addressing the issue, children’s own experiences and perspectives need to be considered. For the most part, the use of ICTs can generate positive benefits for children. Addressing the root causes of children’s vulnerability therefore requires a rights-based and holistic approach. Priorities include more and better evidence on the role of ICTs in facilitating or enabling the sale and sexual exploitation of children; clear terminology; new and improved legislation to help end the sale and sexual exploitation of children; and a multi-sectoral collaborative response.

بيع الأطفال واستغلالهم جنسياً في سياق التكنولوجيا الرقمية
بيع الأطفال واستغلالهم جنسياً في سياق التكنولوجيا الرقمية
Published: 2020 Miscellanea

مع زيادة عدد الأشخاص الذين يستخدمون تكنولوجيا المعلومات والاتصالات في جميع أنحاء العالم، يترتب على ذلك آثار تتعلق ببيع الأطفال واستغلالهم جنسياً. فتكنولوجيا المعلومات والاتصالات الشائعة، مثل الهواتف النقالة وشبكة الإنترنت، أصبحت عوامل تمكينية و/أو مُيسِّرة لارتكاب الجرائم الجنسية ضد الأطفال، بما في ذلك إنتاج ونشر مواد تتضمّن اعتداءات جنسية على الأطفال؛ وتسهيل بغاء الأطفال، والاستغلال الجنسي، ونقل الأعضاء، والتبني غير القانوني؛ وبيع الأطفال لأغراض العمل القَسْري؛ واستمالة الأطفال لأغراض جنسية.

La vente et l’exploitation sexuelle d’enfants dans le contexte des technologies numériques
La vente et l’exploitation sexuelle d’enfants dans le contexte des technologies numériques
Published: 2020 Miscellanea
Le nombre de personnes ayant accès aux technologies de l’information et de la communication augmente partout dans le monde, et ce phénomène a des répercussions sur la vente et l’exploitation sexuelle des enfants. Les TIC largement répandues, à l’instar des téléphones portables et d’Internet, rendent possibles et facilitent la perpétration de délits sexuels contre les enfants, tels que la production et la diffusion de matériel pédopornographique, l’organisation de la prostitution d’enfants, l’exploitation sexuelle, le transfert d’organes et les adoptions illégales, la vente d’enfants à des fins de travail forcé et la sollicitation en ligne d’enfants à des fins sexuelles.
La tratta e lo sfruttamento sessuale dei bambini nell’ambito della tecnologia digitale
La tratta e lo sfruttamento sessuale dei bambini nell’ambito della tecnologia digitale
Published: 2020 Miscellanea
Il progressivo aumento in tutto il mondo dell’accesso alle tecnologie dell'informazione e della comunicazione (TIC) ha implicazioni nell’ambito della tratta e dello sfruttamento sessuale dei bambini. Le TIC più popolari, come i telefoni cellulari e internet, sono diventate strumenti e/o ausili per svariati crimini ai danni dei minori, quali la produzione e la diffusione di materiale pedopornografico , il favoreggiamento della prostituzione minorile , lo sfruttamento sessuale, il traffico di organi, le adozioni illegali, la tratta di bambini per il lavoro forzato, e l'adescamento a fini sessuali.
La venta y explotación sexual de los niños en el contexto de la tecnología digital
La venta y explotación sexual de los niños en el contexto de la tecnología digital
Published: 2020 Miscellanea
La proliferación del acceso a las tecnologías de la información y las comunicaciones (TIC) por parte de cada vez más personas en todo el mundo tiene consecuencias relativas a la venta y explotación sexual de los niños. Las TIC más populares e internet, se han convertido en herramientas cómplices o facilitadoras de los delitos sexuales contra los niños, entre los que se cuentan la producción y difusión de material que incluya abusos sexuales a menores ; la facilitación de la prostitución infantil , la explotación sexual, la transferencia de órganos y las adopciones ilegales; la venta de niños para trabajo forzoso ; y la captación de niños con fines sexuales.
Ethical Considerations When Using Social Media for Evidence Generation
Ethical Considerations When Using Social Media for Evidence Generation

AUTHOR(S)
Gabrielle Berman; James Powell; Manuel Garcia Herranz

Published: 2018 Innocenti Discussion Papers

There are significant ethical implications in the adoption of technologies and the production and use of the resulting data for evidence generation. The potential benefits and opportunities need to be understood in conjunction with the potential risks and challenges. When using social media to directly engage children and their communities, or when establishing partnerships with these organizations for data collection and analysis, adoption of these technologies and their resultant data should not be exclusively driven by short-term necessity but also by the long-term needs of our younger partners. When engaging with social media and indeed most technology, thoughtfulness, reflection and ongoing interrogation is required. This paper examines the benefits, risks and ethical considerations when undertaking evidence generation: (a) using social media platforms and (b) using third-party data collected and analysed by social media services. It is supplemented by practical tools to support reflection on the ethical use of social media platforms and social media data.

Ethical Considerations When Using Geospatial Technologies for Evidence Generation
Ethical Considerations When Using Geospatial Technologies for Evidence Generation

AUTHOR(S)
Gabrielle Berman; Sara de la Rosa; Tanya Accone

Published: 2018 Innocenti Discussion Papers

Geospatial technologies have transformed the way we visualize and understand social phenomena and physical environments. There are significant advantages in using these technologies and data however, their use also presents ethical dilemmas such as privacy and security concerns as well as the potential for stigma and discrimination resulting from being associated with particular locations. Therefore, the use of geospatial technologies and resulting data needs to be critically assessed through an ethical lens prior to implementation of programmes, analyses or partnerships. This paper examines the benefits, risks and ethical considerations when undertaking evidence generation using geospatial technologies. It is supplemented by a checklist that may be used as a practical tool to support reflection on the ethical use of geospatial technologies.

 

Ethical Considerations When Using Social Media for Evidence Generation
Ethical Considerations When Using Social Media for Evidence Generation

AUTHOR(S)
Gabrielle Berman; James Powell; Manuel Garcia Herranz

Published: 2018 Innocenti Research Briefs
As of January 2017, 2.78 billion people worldwide were classified as active social media users. Of these users, 1.87 billion use Facebook. Thirty-nine per cent of Facebook users are between the ages of 13 and 24 (approximately 729 million young people). Available data also show that in 2014, approximately 31 per cent of users of the top five social media platforms were aged between 16 and 24 years. With the enormity of this coverage as well as over 40 per cent growth in usage from the previous year in countries like India, UNICEF has and continues to look at ways to use these platforms and the data generated to connect with and understand the reality of children today and to ensure more child-centred/user-centred policies and services. This brief provides an overview of the critical ethical considerations when undertaking evidence generation using social media platforms and using third-party data collected and analysed by social media services. It is supplemented by checklists that may be used to support reflection on the ethical use of social media platforms and social media data. This brief is based on a more in-depth Innocenti Discussion Paper which provides further guidance and tools.
Ethical Considerations When Using Geospatial Technologies for Evidence Generation
Ethical Considerations When Using Geospatial Technologies for Evidence Generation

AUTHOR(S)
Gabrielle Berman; Sara de la Rosa; Tanya Accone

Published: 2018 Innocenti Research Briefs
Geospatial technologies have transformed the way we visualize and understand situations. They are used to acquire, manipulate, store and visualize geographical information, including information on where individuals, groups and infrastructure are located in time and space. For development and humanitarian based organizations like UNICEF, the value of these technologies includes the ability to collect and process real-time information from places that are hard to reach or navigate such as dense forest, conflict zones, or where environmental disasters are occurring or have occurred. This brief provides an overview of the critical considerations when undertaking evidence generation using geospatial technologies. It is supplemented by a checklist that may be used to support reflection on the ethical use of geospatial technologies. This brief is based on a more in-depth Innocenti Discussion Paper which provides further guidance and tools.
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Responsible Innovation in Technology for Children: Digital technology, play and child well-being
Publication

Responsible Innovation in Technology for Children: Digital technology, play and child well-being

Digital experiences can have significant negative impact on children, exposing them to risks or failing to nurture them adequately. Nevertheless, digital experiences also potentially yield enormous benefits for children, enabling them to learn, to create, to develop friendships, and to build worlds. While global efforts to deepen our understanding of the prevalence and impact of digital risks of harm are burgeoning – a development that is both welcome and necessary – less attention has been paid to understanding and optimizing the benefits that digital technology can provide in supporting children’s rights and their well-being. Benefits here refer not only to the absence of harm, but also to creating additional positive value. How should we recognize the opportunities and benefits of digital technology for children’s well-being? What is the relationship between the design of digital experiences – in particular, play-centred design – and the well-being of children? What guidance and measures can we use to strengthen the design of digital environments to promote positive outcomes for children? And how can we make sure that children’s insights and needs form the foundation of our work in this space? These questions matter for all those who design and promote digital experiences, to keep children safe and happy, and enable positive development and learning. These questions are particularly relevant as the world shifts its attention to emerging digital technologies and experiences, from artificial intelligence (AI) to the metaverse, and seeks to understand their impact on people and society. To begin to tackle these questions, UNICEF and the LEGO Group initiated the Responsible Innovation in Technology for Children (RITEC) project in partnership with the Young and Resilient Research Centre at Western Sydney University; the CREATE Lab at New York University; the Graduate Center, City University of New York; the University of Sheffield; the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for the Digital Child; and the Joan Ganz Cooney Center. The research is funded by the LEGO Foundation. The partnership is an international, multi-stakeholder and cross-sectoral collaboration between organizations that believe the design and development of digital technology should support the rights and well-being of children as a primary objective – and that children should have a prominent voice in making this a reality. This project’s primary objective is to develop, with children from around the world, a framework that maps how the design of children’s digital experiences affects their well-being, and to provide guidance as to how informed design choices can promote positive well-being outcomes.
Resources to Support Marginalized Caregivers of Children with Disabilities: Guidelines for Implementation
Publication

Resources to Support Marginalized Caregivers of Children with Disabilities: Guidelines for Implementation

Support from caregivers is critical for children’s learning both at home and at school. However, the COVID-19 pandemic and disruption of education systems globally created additional expectations for parents to support their children’s learning at home. This particularly affected the most marginalized children as the crises exacerbated already existing inequalities in education. This document introduces the approach and purpose of a set of resources to support the marginalized caregivers of children with disabilities with inclusive education. It presents lessons learned from proof-of-concept pilots in Armenia and Uzbekistan, followed by step-by-step guidelines on how to adopt and adapt the resources for education ministries and others who want to implement them in their education system.
Reopening with Resilience: Lessons from Remote Learning during COVID-19: Europe and Central Asia
Publication

Reopening with Resilience: Lessons from Remote Learning during COVID-19: Europe and Central Asia

When schools started closing their doors due to COVID-19, countries in Europe and Central Asia quickly provided alternative learning solutions for children to continue learning. More than 90 per cent of countries offered digital solutions to ensure that education activities could continue. However, lack of access to digital devices and a reliable internet connection excluded a significant amount of already marginalized children and threatened to widen the existing learning disparities. This report builds on existing evidence highlighting key lessons learned during the pandemic to promote learning for all during school closure and provides actionable policy recommendations on how to bridge the digital divide and build resilient education systems in Europe and Central Asia.

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