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UNICEF Innocenti's complete catalogue of research and reports
Places and Spaces: Environments and children’s well-being
SPOTLIGHT

Places and Spaces: Environments and children’s well-being

Report Card 17 explores how 43 OECD/EU countries are faring in providing healthy environments for children. Do children have clean water to drink? Do they have good-quality air to breathe? Are their homes free of lead and mould? How many children live in overcrowded homes? How many have access to green play spaces, safe from road traffic? Data show that a nation’s wealth does not guarantee a healthy environment. Far too many children are deprived of a healthy home, irreversibly damaging their current and future well-being. Beyond children’s immediate environments, over-consumption in some of the world’s richest countries is destroying children’s environments globally. This threatens both children worldwide and future generations. To provide all children with safe and healthy environments, governments, policymakers, businesses and all stakeholders are called to act on a set of policy recommendations.
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Caregivers’ Guide to Inclusive Education
Caregivers’ Guide to Inclusive Education
Published: 2022 Miscellanea
Parents or caregivers of children with disabilities play a crucial role in supporting their child’s learning. This includes navigating the education system and supporting their child’s participation in an inclusive school. They may face various challenges, which have been amplified even more due to the remote learning and other COVID-19 restrictions. This guide for caregivers aims to (1) help them understand their rights and national inclusive education laws; (2) identify challenges and barriers they are facing in supporting their child’s learning needs and (3) find solutions that can help them to overcome these challenges. It is part of a set of resources to support the marginalized caregivers of children with disabilities with inclusive education.
Resources to Support Marginalized Caregivers of Children with Disabilities: Guidelines for Implementation
Resources to Support Marginalized Caregivers of Children with Disabilities: Guidelines for Implementation

AUTHOR(S)
Bella Baghdasaryan; Natasha Graham; Malin Ljunggren Elisson; Dita Nugroho

Published: 2022 Miscellanea

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.

The Directory of Associations and Organizations to Support Caregivers of Children with Disabilities is a template to develop a directory of local associations, organizations and networks that exist to connect and support parents and caregivers of children with disabilities.

 

Teachers’ Guide to Supporting Marginalized Caregivers of Children with Disabilities
Teachers’ Guide to Supporting Marginalized Caregivers of Children with Disabilities
Published: 2022 Miscellanea

Teachers play an important role in making sure that all children feel safe, supported and included at school. Marginalized caregivers of children with disabilities face various challenges in navigating newly-emerging inclusive education settings. Teachers can learn about the specific needs of children from their caregivers and help caregivers to identify the best ways and materials to support their child’s learning. This guide for teachers aims supports them to engage with caregivers in (1) identifying their children’s individualized learning needs; (2) identifying the challenges in meeting these needs and (3) identifying solutions in to address these challenges. It is part of a set of resources to support the marginalized caregivers of children with disabilities with inclusive education.

School Guide to Supporting Marginalized Caregivers of Children with Disabilities
School Guide to Supporting Marginalized Caregivers of Children with Disabilities
Published: 2022 Miscellanea
Inclusion is most effective when schools create a culture that celebrates diversity and builds on the strengths of each student. Family engagement may look different from school to school, and it is important for schools to support families in a variety of ways, not just relying on one method. This guide aims to help schools to (1) identify specific needs faced by marginalized families of children with disabilities; (2) identify challenges they face to meeting these needs and (3) identify solutions in the form of resources that address these challenges. It is part of a set of resources to support the marginalized caregivers of children with disabilities with inclusive education.
Directory of Resources to Support Caregivers of Children with Disabilities
Directory of Resources to Support Caregivers of Children with Disabilities
Published: 2022 Miscellanea
This document is part of a set of resources to support the marginalized caregivers of children with disabilities with inclusive education, which also includes guides for caregivers, teachers and schools, a workbook containing tools to support the activities, and a template for a directory of associations and organizations to be adapted for different systems. An initial set of helpful materials, information and links from proof-of-concept pilots in Armenia and Uzbekistan have been included, with templates to add more local resources within each system. It is designed to be  a useful first place for caregivers, teachers and school staff to search for solutions to challenges they have identified while using guides. 
Effectiveness of Inclusive Interventions for Children with Disabilities in Low- and Middle-income Countries: Protocol for an evidence and gap map
Effectiveness of Inclusive Interventions for Children with Disabilities in Low- and Middle-income Countries: Protocol for an evidence and gap map

AUTHOR(S)
Anil Thota; Ebele Mogo; Dominic Igbelina; Greg Sheaf; Rahma Mustafa; Shivit Bakrania; Alberto Vásquez Encalada; Gavin Wood

Published: 2022 Innocenti Working Papers

Of the nearly 1 billion people with a disability, 80% live in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) and 240 million are children. Children with disabilities remain one of the most marginalized and excluded groups in society.

This protocol to the Evidence and Gap Map on the Effectiveness of Inclusive Interventions for Children with Disabilities Living in LMICs aims to identify the available evidence on inclusive interventions to improve access to health, education and social services for these children, and enable them to participate fully in society by addressing discrimination, improving living conditions, incorporating mainstreaming approaches and promoting empowerment. It highlights gaps in the evidence to prioritize future research and evaluation agendas; identifies contextual factors related to various populations and settings; and provides a database of peer-reviewed and grey literature in this area.

Assistive Technology in Humanitarian Settings: Overview of Research Project
Assistive Technology in Humanitarian Settings: Overview of Research Project

AUTHOR(S)
Gavin Wood; Golnaz Whittaker

Published: 2022 Innocenti Research Report

There are 240 million children with disabilities in the world; half of them are out of school. Many are invisible, stigmatized, hidden by their families and abandoned by their governments. Children with disabilities, especially in humanitarian settings, are among the poorest members of the population and one of the most marginalized and excluded groups in society.

With only an estimated 1 in 10 children with a need for assistive devices having access, UNICEF’s Office of Research – Innocenti undertook a study to better understand the nature and drivers of Assistive Technology (AT) access in humanitarian settings.

This document provides a synthesis of the project’s various reports and papers: (1) a thematic literature review summarizes the academic evidence base regarding the provision of AT in humanitarian settings, including the nature and scale of provision and barriers and facilitators of access and provision; and (2) three case studies of countries affected by crisis to triangulate the findings of the literature review and fill identified knowledge gaps with real-world examples: Afghanistan, South Sudan, and the State of Palestine.

Barriers and Facilitators to Providing Assistive Technologies to Children with Disabilities in South Sudan
Barriers and Facilitators to Providing Assistive Technologies to Children with Disabilities in South Sudan

AUTHOR(S)
Golnaz Whittaker; Gavin Wood

Published: 2022 Innocenti Working Papers

South Sudan is in a protracted crisis. Four million people have been displaced and many have been left living with high levels of injury, poverty and food insecurity. The impact of the crisis on children – who make up over 29% of the population – is particularly high, and a large number are at risk of being born with or acquiring a disability.

Assistive technologies (AT) – the systems, services and products that enhance the functioning of people with impairments – are likely to be required by many children in South Sudan with disabilities. There is no reliable data available on disability prevalence or AT needs in South Sudan, though estimates suggest a range between 10% and 15% of the population. This work aims to understand the landscape of AT provision and the barriers and facilitators to provision and provides recommendations for priority actions.

Barriers and Facilitators to Providing Assistive Technologies to Children with Disabilities in Afghanistan
Barriers and Facilitators to Providing Assistive Technologies to Children with Disabilities in Afghanistan

AUTHOR(S)
Golnaz Whittaker; Gavin Wood

Published: 2022 Innocenti Working Papers

Due to the impacts of the ongoing conflict, Afghanistan’s child population is at high risk of being born with or acquiring a primary or secondary disability.

According to a recent estimate, up to 17% of Afghanistan’s children live with some form of disability. Assistive Technologies – the systems, services and products that enhance the functioning of people with impairments – are likely to be required by a large proportion of children with disabilities in Afghanistan. Afghanistan has signed and ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which includes a commitment to provide assistive technologies equitably to all who need it. However, little action has been taken to meet this commitment, and there continues to be a vast gap between need and provision. This work presents the the barriers and facilitators to provision and provides recommendations to begin to close the gap.

The Provision of Assistive Technology to Children with Disabilities in Humanitarian Settings: A Review of the available evidence on the current state of provision, gaps in evidence, and barriers to and facilitators of better delivery
The Provision of Assistive Technology to Children with Disabilities in Humanitarian Settings: A Review of the available evidence on the current state of provision, gaps in evidence, and barriers to and facilitators of better delivery

AUTHOR(S)
Golnaz Whittaker; Gavin Wood

Published: 2022 Innocenti Working Papers

One billion people in the world live with a disability; 240 million are children. The majority of the world’s children with disabilities live in low- and middle-income countries, where humanitarian crises are most likely to occur. Humanitarian crises increase the prevalence of child disability and the need for assistive technologies as children sustain new disabling injuries, children with disabilities lose their assistive devices, or access to limited existing health services is worsened by crisis. In addition, there are likely to be many more children with disabilities in humanitarian settings whose need for assistive technologies has never been identified.

This literature review discusses the barriers to assistive technologies provision in humanitarian settings and considers possible entry points for provision in the future. Recommendations include: coordination platforms for provision; gathering evidence on existing in-country provision and strengthening those systems; designing programmes for provision that account for pre-existing barriers, within-crises barriers including those internal to humanitarian organizations like UNICEF.

The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the Provision of Assistive Technology in the State of Palestine
The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the Provision of Assistive Technology in the State of Palestine

AUTHOR(S)
Golnaz Whittaker; Gavin Wood

Published: 2022 Innocenti Working Papers

Official statistics identify 2% to 7% of the population in the State of Palestine as having a disability. Evidence is limited regarding levels of access to assistive technologies (AT) by people with disabilities in the State of Palestine. However, estimates suggest that there are high levels of unmet need. Less than 10% of children with disabilities received assistive devices in the year of one recent survey. The COVID-19 pandemic has had an impact on a range of such services in many countries, but little information is yet available on the impact on AT provision in humanitarian settings.

Best of UNICEF Research 2021
Best of UNICEF Research 2021
Published: 2021 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 ninth edition brings together 11 powerful studies from around the world and across the five Strategic Goal Areas. How do South Asian youth feel about entering the world of work? What is the effect of climate-related hazards on access to health care? How has COVID-19 affected children and their families in the Republic of Moldova? With social and economic inequalities increasing and progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals lagging, rigorous research – answers to these questions – has never mattered more.

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JOURNAL ARTICLES BLOGS
Return on Knowledge: How international development agencies are collaborating to deliver impact through knowledge, learning, research and evidence
Publication

Return on Knowledge: How international development agencies are collaborating to deliver impact through knowledge, learning, research and evidence

Effective collaboration around knowledge management and organizational learning is a key contributor to improving the impact of international development work for the world’s most vulnerable people. But how can it be proven? With only 10 years from the target date for the Sustainable Development Goals, nine of the world’s most influential agencies set out to show to the connection between the use of evidence, knowledge and learning and a better quality of human life. This book – a synthesis of stories, examples and insights that demonstrate where and how these practices have made a positive impact on development programming – is the result of the Multi-Donor Learning Partnership (MDLP), a collective effort to record the ways each of these organizations have leveraged intentional, systematic and resourced approaches to knowledge management and organizational learning in their work.
Gender Solutions: Capturing the impact of UNICEF’s gender equality evidence investments (2014–2021)
Publication

Gender Solutions: Capturing the impact of UNICEF’s gender equality evidence investments (2014–2021)

UNICEF has undertaken hundreds of gender evidence generation activities, supporting programmatic action, advocacy work and policymaking. The Gender Solutions project aims to draw together the knowledge, innovations and impacts of gender evidence work conducted by UNICEF offices since the first UNICEF Gender Action Plan was launched in 2014. A desk review identified over 700 gender-related UNICEF research, evaluation and data evidence generation activities since 2014. Twenty-five outputs were shortlisted because of their high quality and (potential for) impact and three were selected as Gender Evidence Award winners by an external review panel. By capturing the impact of this broad body of work, Gender Solutions aims to showcase UNICEF’s evidence investments, reward excellence and inform the rollout of the UNICEF Gender Policy 2021–2030 and Action Plan 2022–2025.
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.
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.

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