Prospects for Children in the Polycrisis: A 2023 Global Outlook

Prospects for Children in the Polycrisis: A 2023 Global Outlook

AUTHOR(S)
UNICEF Innocenti – Global Office of Research and Foresight

Published: 2023 Innocenti Publications

This report outlines the polycrisis in which the world finds itself — multiple, simultaneous shocks with strong interdependencies, intensified in an ever-more integrated world — along with eight trends that will shape child rights and well-being in the coming year. The trends explored are: 

 

  1. The pandemic's harms will continue to be counted - but reforms of health architecture and medical breakthroughs offer hope for children.
  2. Efforts to tame inflation will have unintended negative effects on child poverty and well-being - requiring policy measures that protect investments for vulnerable families and children.
  3. Multiple factors will contribute to continued food and nutrition insecurity - with increasing calls for greater climate adaptation and food systems reform to prevent food poverty in children.
  4. The worsening energy crisis may cause immediate harm to children - but the focus on energy sustainability provides hope for a greener future.
  5. Unmet needs and underinvestment in children warrant reforms of financial flows to developing countries - while renewed attention on climate finance and debt relief holds promise.
  6. Threats to democratic rights such as freedom of expression are expected to continue - but social movements, including those led by young people and women, are likely to push back.
  7. Increasing factionalism will put further stress on multilateralism - but efforts to address children's and young people's concerns may offer opportunities to find common ground.
  8. The internet will continue to fragment and become less global, resulting in further disparities for children - prompting a greater push for openness, fairness and inclusion.

 

On Call: Using Mobile Technologies to Measure Learning in Emergencies

On Call: Using Mobile Technologies to Measure Learning in Emergencies

Published: 2022 Innocenti Research Report

How can we harness the power of mobile technologies to track learning in emergencies? Identifying ways to improve assessments in emergencies is incredibly important as there remains large gaps in understanding how children are learning in crisis settings. This report aims to provide practitioners with practical guidance and resources on using mobile technology to conduct learning assessments in emergency settings. It is the second of a two-part series on uses of mobile phones for education in emergency programmes and draws from a review of the existing literature as well as feedback from education in emergencies practitioners.

On Call: Using Mobile Phones to Provide Learning in Emergencies

On Call: Using Mobile Phones to Provide Learning in Emergencies

Published: 2022 Innocenti Research Report

In 2021, an estimated 37 million children were forcibly displaced across the globe. Ensuring these children continue their education in times of crisis is a significant challenge. One tool that can help children stay in education is basic mobile phones. Basic mobile phones can provide learning through multiple channels, such as text messages, voice calls, nudges and lessons through radio broadcasts. This report outlines, in detail, how mobile phones can be applied as a learning tool in emergency settings. It also provides practical case studies and references for how mobile phones have been used to teach students, support parents and train teachers.

This report is also part of the On Call two-part series on the uses of mobile technologies for education in emergency settings, with the second report focusing on mobile technologies for learning assessments.

Estimates of internet access for children in Ethiopia, Kenya, Namibia, Uganda and the United Republic of Tanzania

Estimates of internet access for children in Ethiopia, Kenya, Namibia, Uganda and the United Republic of Tanzania

Published: 2022 Innocenti Research Briefs

The COVID-19 pandemic transformed internet connectivity from an important asset to an essential piece of infrastructure. Yet two thirds of the world’s school-aged children still have no fixed internet connection at home. This lack of connectivity limits their ability to go online; prevents them from participating and competing in the modern economy; and risks isolating them from the world.

This research brief presents new data on children’s internet access in five countries in Eastern and Southern Africa. It provides estimates of the frequency with which children use the internet and assesses the most common barriers they face. Finally, it explores the potential consequences of leaving these bottlenecks unaddressed.

Réouvrir les écoles avec résilience: Leçons tirées de l’enseignement à distance pendant la COVID-19 en Afrique de l’Ouest et du Centre

Réouvrir les écoles avec résilience: Leçons tirées de l’enseignement à distance pendant la COVID-19 en Afrique de l’Ouest et du Centre

AUTHOR(S)
Marco Valenza; Yacouba Dijbo Abdou; Thomas Dreesen

Published: 2021 Innocenti Research Report
Les pays d'Afrique de l'Ouest et du Centre ont mis en œuvre des mesures nationales pour poursuivre les activités d’apprentissage pendant la fermeture des écoles. Ces mesures reposaient sur une combinaison de modalités de diffusion : des plateformes en ligne, des médias audiovisuels, des téléphones portables et des supports imprimés. Cependant, plusieurs obstacles ont empêché de nombreux enfants et adolescents de la région de profiter de ces opportunités d’apprentissage, dans un contexte où, même avant la pandémie, près de 50 % d’entre eux n'atteignaient pas les compétences minimales en lecture à la fin du cycle primaire. En s’appuyant sur les données régionales disponibles, ce rapport met en évidence les principales leçons à tirer en matière d’apprentissage à distance et fournit des recommandations concrètes pour renforcer la résilience des systèmes éducatifs nationaux face aux fermetures des écoles.
Hacia la reapertura de escuelas más resilientes: Lecciones extraídas del aprendizaje a distancia durante la COVID-19 en América Latina y el Caribe

Hacia la reapertura de escuelas más resilientes: Lecciones extraídas del aprendizaje a distancia durante la COVID-19 en América Latina y el Caribe

AUTHOR(S)
Javier Santiago Ortiz Correa; Marco Valenza; Vincenzo Placco; Thomas Dreesen

Published: 2022 Innocenti Research Report

La implementación de la educación a distancia en América Latina y el Caribe, producto del cierre de las escuelas debido a la COVID-19, confirmó que la brecha en el acceso a la electricidad y a la tecnología aún es un obstáculo importante para que los gobiernos de la región puedan atender a todos los niños, niñas y adolescentes. El cierre de las escuelas implica el riesgo de ampliar las brechas de aprendizaje existentes, pues las escuelas privadas estaban más preparadas en cuanto al uso de la tecnología para la educación a distancia. Adicionalmente, los niños, niñas y adolescentes de los hogares más favorecidos recibían más apoyo en casa mientras las escuelas estaban cerradas. Conforme los países de la región reabren las escuelas, es vital que los gobiernos incorporen las principales lecciones aprendidas para mejorar la resiliencia y la equidad de sus sistemas educativos. Este informe presenta evidencias sobre el aprendizaje a distancia durante el cierre de las escuelas debido a la COVID-19 en América Latina y el Caribe para orientar a los tomadores de decisiones en la construcción de sistemas educativos más eficaces, sostenibles y resilientes para las crisis actuales y futuras.

Children and COVID-19 Research Library Quarterly Digest Issue 5

Children and COVID-19 Research Library Quarterly Digest Issue 5

Published: 2022 Innocenti Digest

The introduction of COVID-19 vaccination has been unprecedented in scope and challenges. While the risk of severe disease is lower in children and adolescents, vaccination significantly reduces the risk of severe complications in young people. Not only does vaccination protect children and adolescents from severe illness and death on an individual level, but increasing COVID-19 vaccination coverage among young people is critical to curbing overall community transmission of the disease at the population level.

Drawing on the UNICEF Innocenti Children and COVID-19 Research Library, this issue of the digest summarizes evidence of factors influencing caregiver decision-making attitudes and behaviours regarding vaccinating children and adolescents against COVID-19. Eleven research papers are spotlighted  along with some practical tools to support caregiver decision-making and enhance vaccine uptake. The evidence, insights and lessons from these studies can help policymakers and health practitioners better support caregivers to make important decisions related to the health of their children and communities.

Life in Colours: Children’s and adolescents’ experiences, perceptions and opinions on the COVID-19 pandemic

Life in Colours: Children’s and adolescents’ experiences, perceptions and opinions on the COVID-19 pandemic

Published: 2022 Innocenti Research Report

This report recounts the journeys of a group of adolescents through the COVID-19 pandemic in Italy, one of the first countries to be affected by the virus. It is the first product of an in-depth qualitative study that aims to understand the experiences of children and young people from their point of view and through their words.

The data for this project were collected online between February and June 2021 with 114 participants between the ages of 10 and 19, who attended lower and upper secondary schools in 16 regions of Italy, and included children and young people who identify as LGBTQI+, unaccompanied and separated children, and adolescents from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds. 

It’s Difficult to Grow Up in an Apocalypse: Children's and adolescents' experiences, perceptions and opinions on the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada

It’s Difficult to Grow Up in an Apocalypse: Children's and adolescents' experiences, perceptions and opinions on the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada

AUTHOR(S)
Heather L. Ramey; Heather L. Lawford; Yana Berardini; Sarah Caimano; Sarah Epp; Chantelle Edwards; Lisa Wolff

Published: 2022 Innocenti Research Report

According to children and youth in Canada, what were the negative and positive impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on their lives? How did they experience changes in their relationships; daily schedule; time at home; use of technology; or feelings of anger, worry, loneliness or gratitude? How were these experienced by marginalized groups, including LGBTQ+ and Indigenous children and youth?

To date, research on Canadian children’s and youth’s experiences during the pandemic has lacked a broad exploration of their own perspectives. This qualitative study, however, was informed by three child and youth advisory teams, with input from 10 focus groups; 23 semi-structured interviews and a total of 74 young people (10–19), from four provinces and one territory.

The report concludes with a set of 4 policy recommendations – by its participants – addressed to federal, provincial/territorial and local governments, as well as to school districts, and child and youth service sectors.

Analyse méthodologique pour la recherche Data Must Speak: Enseignements tirés de l’approche modèle positive, des sciences comportementales, de la recherche sur la mise en oeuvre et de la science de la mise à l’échelle

Analyse méthodologique pour la recherche Data Must Speak: Enseignements tirés de l’approche modèle positive, des sciences comportementales, de la recherche sur la mise en oeuvre et de la science de la mise à l’échelle

AUTHOR(S)
Lorena Levano Gavidia; Cirenia Chavez; Alvaro Fortin; Luca Maria Pesando; Renaud Comba

Published: 2022 Innocenti Research Report

La pandémie a aggravé une crise de l'apprentissage et mis en péril les objectifs mondiaux. Et pourtant, même dans les contextes éducatifs les plus difficiles, certaines écoles obtiennent de meilleurs résultats que d'autres, situées dans des contextes similaires et avec un niveau de ressources équivalent. Pourquoi ces écoles exceptionnelles, connues sous le nom d'écoles "modèles positives", obtiennent-elles de meilleurs résultats en matière d'apprentissage, de rétention, d'équité et d'égalité des sexes ?

Data Must Speak (DMS) - une initiative mondiale mise en œuvre depuis 2014 - vise à combler les lacunes en matière de preuves tangibles pour atténuer la crise de l'apprentissage en utilisant les données existantes. Le volet recherche de DMS est cocréé avec les ministères de l'éducation. Il s'appuie sur des méthodes mixtes pour générer des connaissances, parallèlement à des enseignements pratiques sur ce qui fonctionne, pourquoi et comment mettre à l'échelle des solutions de terrain pour les décideurs politiques nationaux et la communauté internationale dans le domaine de l'éducation.

La recherche utilise des approches innovantes et complémentaires telles que l’approche modèle positive, des sciences comportementales, de la recherche sur la mise en œuvre et de la science de la mise à l'échelle pour identifier et mettre à l'échelle les comportements et les pratiques des écoles "modèles positives". Cette revue méthodologique présente les définitions, concepts et méthodologies clés de ces approches afin de guider et d'informer le développement et la mise en œuvre de la recherche DMS au niveau national. En s'appuyant sur des exemples existants tirés de la recherche sur l'éducation et d'autres domaines, cet revue propose également les meilleures pratiques et les leçons tirées de ces approches qui peuvent être utilisées comme référence commune et langage standard pour leurs applications futures.

La recherche DMS est actuellement mise en oeuvre dans 14 pays: Brésil, Burkina Faso, Tchad, Côte d'Ivoire, Éthiopie, Ghana, Laos, Madagascar, Mali, Népal, Niger, Tanzanie, Togo et Zambie. Elle est cofinancé par KIX (CRDI/GPE), la Fondation Jacobs, la Fondation Hewlett, NORAD, Schools2030, et les resources internes de l'UNICEF.

Best of UNICEF Research 2022

Best of UNICEF Research 2022

AUTHOR(S)
UNICEF Innocenti

Published: 2022 Miscellanea

Best of UNICEF Research showcases the most rigorous, innovative and impactful research produced by UNICEF offices worldwide. While evidence highlights emerging issues, it also informs decisions and provides policy and programme recommendations for governments and partners, to improve children's lives.

This year, Best of UNICEF Research celebrates its 10th edition. It features 12 research projects that the selection panel concurred deserved special recognition for delivering results for children in 2022. How? By informing decision-making, shaping policy, raising public awareness, driving social change, and giving children and young people a voice on the issues that affect them most through participatory research.

These endeavours showcase both the power of innovation in the face of emergency and crisis, and the virtues of agility, endurance and scalability. They also offer solutions and ways to learn from each other. Each piece of research offers a set of adaptable tools: validated methodologies; templates for emergency response plans; methods of monitoring and measuring progress; and examples of successful collaboration between stakeholders. 

 

Evidence and Gap Map Research Brief: UNICEF Strategic Plan 2018–2021: COVID-19 special evidence brief

Evidence and Gap Map Research Brief: UNICEF Strategic Plan 2018–2021: COVID-19 special evidence brief

Published: 2022 Innocenti Research Briefs

This research brief is one of a series of six briefs, which provide an overview of available evidence shown in the Campbell-UNICEF Mega-Map of the effectiveness of interventions to improve child well-being in low- and middle-income countries. Five of these briefs summarize evidence as mapped against the five goal areas of UNICEF’s 2018–2021 Strategic Plan. A sixth special brief was added to focus specifically on COVID-19 and other epidemics and major crises. It is anticipated that the briefs will also be useful for others working in the child well-being space.

Cite this publication | No. of pages: 5 | Tags: child well-being, COVID-19
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