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Adolescent wellbeing

Despite great strides in improving overall child well-being, progress has been slower in key areas of adolescent vulnerability, including exposure to violence, early marriage and school completion, especially among adolescent girls. The Lancet Commission ‘Our Future’ (2016) has examined the rapidly changing social and structural determinants of adolescent well-being and their implications on health promotion and prevention work.  It stresses the importance of adolescence as a critical period of formative growth that affects well-being across the life course. Although evidence is building in some domains of adolescent’s lives, greater understanding of the transition to adulthood and how different underlying factors interact is needed in order to inform the basis for effective programming and policy. The need to incorporate consideration of different structural factors into programme design is gaining support, yet there is still little guidance on systematic evidence-based approaches to employ in practice.

The Adolescent Research Programme is advancing global understandings of adolescent well-being in selected countries and themes by defining the drivers of well-being outcomes (‘causes and consequences’) and examining effective policy and programme interventions (‘what works’).

Research Priorities 2014 – 2018
• Rigorous evidence generation on structural and social determinants of adolescent wellbeing across sectors and throughout the life course.
• Understanding formal institutions, systems and policy processes as well as social and cultural norms affecting behaviours and policy implementation.
• Analytical focus on age and gender gaps to shed light on the main drivers of adolescent vulnerability.

Global Research Partnership
Together with UK Department of International Development, Italy, SIDA, UNICEF as well as US Department of Labour, the Oak Foundation, and others, the global research partnership is working with multiple national governments and institutions to improve understandings of various dimensions of adolescents’ lives.
The programme is linked to the Gender and Adolescence Global Evidence initiative. It leverages UNICEF’s programme technical capacity as well as networks of regional and country offices and implementing partners in low and middle income countries.
Drawing on multi –disciplinary research expertise, the UNICEF programme has produced cutting edge research that explores what works to improve outcomes for adolescents.
Quality evidence is having impact - informing effective policy and interventions in focus countries and beyond.

Adolescent wellbeing

Despite great strides in improving overall child well-being, progress has been slower in key areas of adolescent vulnerability, including exposure to violence, early marriage and school completion, especially among adolescent girls. The Lancet Commission ‘Our Future’ (2016) has examined the rapidly changing social and structural determinants of adolescent well-being and their implications on health promotion and prevention work.  It stresses the importance of adolescence as a critical period of formative growth that affects well-being across the life course. Although evidence is building in some domains of adolescent’s lives, greater understanding of the transition to adulthood and how different underlying factors interact is needed in order to inform the basis for effective programming and policy. The need to incorporate consideration of different structural factors into programme design is gaining support, yet there is still little guidance on systematic evidence-based approaches to employ in practice.

The Adolescent Research Programme is advancing global understandings of adolescent well-being in selected countries and themes by defining the drivers of well-being outcomes (‘causes and consequences’) and examining effective policy and programme interventions (‘what works’).

Research Priorities 2014 – 2018
• Rigorous evidence generation on structural and social determinants of adolescent wellbeing across sectors and throughout the life course.
• Understanding formal institutions, systems and policy processes as well as social and cultural norms affecting behaviours and policy implementation.
• Analytical focus on age and gender gaps to shed light on the main drivers of adolescent vulnerability.

Global Research Partnership
Together with UK Department of International Development, Italy, SIDA, UNICEF as well as US Department of Labour, the Oak Foundation, and others, the global research partnership is working with multiple national governments and institutions to improve understandings of various dimensions of adolescents’ lives.
The programme is linked to the Gender and Adolescence Global Evidence initiative. It leverages UNICEF’s programme technical capacity as well as networks of regional and country offices and implementing partners in low and middle income countries.
Drawing on multi –disciplinary research expertise, the UNICEF programme has produced cutting edge research that explores what works to improve outcomes for adolescents.
Quality evidence is having impact - informing effective policy and interventions in focus countries and beyond.

LATEST PUBLICATIONS

A quarterly research digest highlighting the most important news and resources in adolescent well-being over the last three months.

A quarterly research digest highlighting the most important news and resources in adolescent well-being over the last three months.

In 2016, UNICEF hosted The Adolescent Brain: A second window of opportunity, a symposium that brought together experts in adolescent neuroscience to discuss this emerging science and how we can apply it to support all adolescents – but especially those already facing risks to their well-being, including poverty, deprivation, conflict and crisis. The articles in this compendium elaborate on some of the ideas shared at the symposium. Together, they provide a broad view of the dynamic interactions among physical, sexual and brain development that take place during adolescence. They highlight some of the risks to optimal development – including toxic stress, which can interfere with the formation of brain connections, and other vulnerabilities unique to the onset of puberty and independence. They also point to the opportunities for developing interventions that can build on earlier investments in child development – consolidating gains and even offsetting the effects of deficits and traumas experienced earlier in childhood.

EDITOR(S)

Nikola Balvin; Prerna Banati

A quarterly research digest highlighting the most important news and resources in adolescent well-being over the last three months.

We live in an information society, where the flow of information in the virtual environment is unprecedented. Web 2.0 platforms – and recently Web 3.0 platforms and the Internet of Things (IoT) – represent an important step forward in enhancing the lives of both adults and children everywhere, by combining greater efficiencies with a wide availability of new tools that can boost individual creativity and collective production. This new environment has exposed adults and children to fresh challenges that deserve special attention, especially those surrounding privacy. The main objective of this paper is to address the challenges posed to child privacy online and the impact that these challenges might have on other rights such as freedom of expression, access to information and public participation. To do this, the paper first analyses the current (and foreseen) threats to child privacy online and the various approaches adopted by government and/or the private sector to tackle this issue. The paper also examines whether children’s perspectives and needs are considered in international debates on technology regulation, including in regard to the so-called ‘right to be forgotten’. It then contextualizes the protection of privacy (and data protection) in relation to other fundamental rights in the online environment, arguing that in most cases this interaction is rather positive, with the enforcement of the right to privacy serving to protect other rights. The paper concludes by proposing some policy recommendations on how to better address the protection of children’s online privacy. These objectives are achieved through literature review and analysis of legal instruments.

AUTHOR(S)

Mario Viola de Azevedo Cunha

This quarterly digest synthesizes the latest research findings in adolescent well-being over the last three months. This edition includes compelling research, resources, news and events that address the issue of adolescent health from many perspectives.

This quarterly digest synthesizes the latest research findings in adolescent well-being over the last three months. This edition includes compelling research, resources, news and events that address the issue of gender from many perspectives.

This Report Card offers an assessment of child well-being in the context of sustainable development across 41 countries of the European Union (EU) and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

The new universal Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) call for “reducing at least by half the proportion of men, women and children of all ages living in poverty in all its dimensions according to national definitions” by 2030.

AUTHOR(S)

Yekaterina Chzhen; Zlata Bruckauf; Emilia Toczydlowska

MORE PUBLICATIONS

Project team

Prerna Banati; Michelle Godwin; Kerry Albright; Nikola Balvin; Emanuela Bianchera; Jasmina Byrne; Jose Cuesta; Bina D'Costa; Heidi Loening-Voysey; Michelle Mills; Tia Palermo; Audrey Pereira; Amber Peterman; Alina Potts; Leah Prencipe; Elsa Valli


Partner organizations

African Economic Research Consortium

Gender and Adolescence: Global Evidence

Institute for Social Development Studies - Vietnam

International Center for Research on Women

Policy Research for Development

Social Development Direct

The Bassiouni Group

The Lancet Commission on Adolescent Health and Wellbeing

The Transfer Project

UNICEF - Adolescent Development and Participation Team

UNICEF Gender Team

University of Edinburgh

University of Malawi

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

University of Oxford

University of Zambia

University of Zimbabwe

Young Lives International Study on Childhood Poverty


Videos

Solange's Story: Young people working to end violence in Peru

Blogs

Can data help end corporal punishment?

Supporting families and parents in a rapidly changing world

Are we failing adolescents?


Commentaries

Adolescent Digest Review: One youth's perspective


Journal articles

Children’s Roles in Social Reproduction: reexamining the discourse on care through a child lens


What's new stories

Handbook on adolescent development research published


Related external links

Handbook of Adolescent Development Research and its Impact on Global Policy

UNICEF Data on Adolescents

UNICEF Adolescents and Youth


External website

UNICEF Gender


RESEARCH WATCH

Are we failing adolescent girls?

Will there be an AIDS-free generation?


Conferences & Meetings

Social Protection “Plus” Workshop


Related Innocenti Projects

2014-2015

An operational structural determinants framework for adolescents

PROJECTS ARCHIVE