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Child labour

Child labour

The latest ILO estimates indicate that 152 million children around the world engage in harmful and exploitative work, signalling the need for urgent action to eliminate child labour by 2025 (SDG 8.7). To help achieve this goal, the UNICEF Office of Research-Innocenti conducts research to identify effective policies to eliminate child labour and improve education outcomes.

Our research follows the guiding framework provided by the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which protects children from harmful work. Based on ILO Conventions, we recognise various forms of child work, including non-hazardous work, child labour, as well as worst forms of child labour.  

Child Labour and Social Protection in Africa

This project studies whether national cash transfer programmes primarily aimed at poverty reduction can help reduce child labour. Under a Cooperative Agreement with funding from the United States Department of Labor (USDoL) (see disclaimer here), we generate mixed-method evidence from Malawi, Tanzania and Zambia.

Child labour and Education in India and Bangladesh

This project studies the relationship between child labour and education outcomes and assesses the effectiveness of educational strategies in reducing child labour. With a focus on India and Bangladesh, the project is funded with UK aid from the UK Government, as part of the broader FCDO Asia Regional Child Labour Programme. 

Publications

Cash Transfers, Public Works and Child Activities: Mixed Methods Evidence from the United Republic of Tanzania
Publication Publication

Cash Transfers, Public Works and Child Activities: Mixed Methods Evidence from the United Republic of Tanzania

This paper examines the impact of the United Republic of Tanzania’s Productive Social Safety Net (PSSN) on child work and education.
The Importance of Understanding and Monitoring the Effects of Cash Transfer Programmes on Child Labour and Education: Findings from Malawi. A Policy Brief
Publication Publication

The Importance of Understanding and Monitoring the Effects of Cash Transfer Programmes on Child Labour and Education: Findings from Malawi. A Policy Brief

The Impact of Zambia’s Unconditional Child Grant on Schooling and Work: Results from a large-scale social experiment
Publication Publication

The Impact of Zambia’s Unconditional Child Grant on Schooling and Work: Results from a large-scale social experiment

This paper reports the impact on child schooling and work of the Government of Zambia’s Child Grant Programme (CGP), an unconditional cash transfer programme targeted to households with children aged under 3 years in three districts of the country. The impacts reported here lead to the conclusion that unconditional cash transfers in Africa have significant positive impacts on children’s human capital.

Events

Evidence on educational strategies to address child labour in India and Bangladesh
Event Event

Evidence on educational strategies to address child labour in India and Bangladesh

30 Nov-Dec 2019 -  The workshop's objective is to establish current evidence and inform future direction for research on educational strategies to address child labour in India and Bangladesh. Bringing together 24 experts on the topics of child labour and education, as well as donors (DFID) and programme partners (ILO, UNICEF Regional Office for South Asia, IDS, UNICEF country offices), the workshop represents the main inception activity for the DFID-funded research project “Supporting DFID’s Asia Regional Child Labour Programme: Evidence on Educational Strategies to Address Child Labour in South Asia". The project is carried out by UNICEF Innocenti, as part of the broader DFID “Asia Regional Child Labour Programme”.
USAID Counter-Trafficking in Persons Evidence Summit
Event Event

USAID Counter-Trafficking in Persons Evidence Summit

29-30 October 2019 - UNICEF Innocenti's Jacobus de Hoop presented work on "Child Transfers, Child Work & Schooling" at USAID's Counter-Trafficking in Persons Evidence Summit. More than 85 researchers, experts, and practitioners gathered to share information about anti-trafficking data and efforts and discuss applications for field programming and policy.

Project countries

Project team

Dominic Richardson

UNICEF Innocenti

Ramya Subrahmanian

UNICEF Innocenti

Valeria Groppo

UNICEF Innocenti

Luisa Natali

UNICEF Innocenti

Partners

Related

Innocenti Project(s) 2016-2021:

Cash Plus

Child labour and education in India and Bangladesh

Child labour and social protection in Africa

Social protection and cash transfers

PROJECTS ARCHIVE

Blogs

Why Child Labour Cannnot Be Forgotten During Covid 19

Ending Child Labour in South Asia Through Access to Quality Education

Journal articles

Cash Transfers, Microentrepreneurial Activity, and Child Work: Evidence from Malawi and Zambia

The role of productive activities in the lives of adolescents: Photovoice evidence from Malawi

Effects of public policy on child labour: current knowledge, gaps, and implications for program design

The impact of Zambia's unconditional child grant on schooling and work: results from a large-scale social experiment

Power Point presentation

Child Work in the Karamoja ECD Cash or Food Transfer Programme

Cash transfers and child work in Malawi, Zambia and Tanzania

Cash transfers, productive investments and child work

Policy reports

Malawi Social Cash Transfer Programme Endline Impact Evaluation Report

Tanzania's productive social safety net programme (PSSN) and its impacts on youth

External website

Understanding child work project