CONNECT
search advanced search
UNICEF Innocenti
Office of Research-Innocenti
search menu
Disrupting harm

The Disrupting Harm project was established to generate high-quality evidence on technology-facilitated sexual exploitation and abuse of children. It is a 14-country research project conducted in partnership with ECPAT International and INTERPOL, funded by the Global Partnership to End Violence against Children. Together, we will develop a new research methodology to study  when and how digital technology might facilitate sexual abuse and exploitation of children, both online and offline. The purpose is to identify priority areas for interventions by governments and other organizations working to protect children from these crimes.

The project will assess the nature of this problem in 14 countries across Eastern and Southern Africa and Southeast Asia, using multiple data sources to triangulate evidence. UNICEF Office of Research - -Innocenti will conduct nationally representative household surveys to collect data from 1,000 children and 1,000 caretakers per country. We hope that by speaking to children directly, we can better understand their experiences of online violence within the larger context of their general internet use.

Disrupting harm

The Disrupting Harm project was established to generate high-quality evidence on technology-facilitated sexual exploitation and abuse of children. It is a 14-country research project conducted in partnership with ECPAT International and INTERPOL, funded by the Global Partnership to End Violence against Children. Together, we will develop a new research methodology to study  when and how digital technology might facilitate sexual abuse and exploitation of children, both online and offline. The purpose is to identify priority areas for interventions by governments and other organizations working to protect children from these crimes.

The project will assess the nature of this problem in 14 countries across Eastern and Southern Africa and Southeast Asia, using multiple data sources to triangulate evidence. UNICEF Office of Research - -Innocenti will conduct nationally representative household surveys to collect data from 1,000 children and 1,000 caretakers per country. We hope that by speaking to children directly, we can better understand their experiences of online violence within the larger context of their general internet use.

LATEST INNOCENTI PUBLICATIONS

The internet is often celebrated for its ability to aid children’s development. But it is simultaneously criticized for reducing children’s quality of life and exposing them to unknown and unprecedented dangers. There is considerable debate about when or how children’s rights – including the rights to expression, to privacy, to information, to play and to protection from harm, as set out in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child – may be realized or infringed in the digital age. With more children around the world going online every day, it is more important than ever to clarify how the internet can advance children’s opportunities in life while safeguarding them from harm or abuse. This requires evidence, from children themselves, that represents the diversity of children’s experiences at the national and global levels. By talking to children, we are better able to understand not only the barriers they face in accessing the internet, but also the opportunities they enjoy and the skills and competences they acquire by engaging in these activities. This allows us to enquire about children’s exposure to online risks and possible harms, and about the role of their parents as mediators and sources of support. In bringing children’s own voices and experiences to the centre of policy development, legislative reform and programme and service delivery, we hope the decisions made in these spheres will serve children’s best interests.

AUTHOR(S)

Sonia Livingstone; Daniel Kardefelt Winther; Marium Saeed

For some years, UNICEF has been researching children’s online risk and safety, promoting digital citizenship, and conducting both programmes for awareness-raising among children and for communication for development through the use of ICT.

A revised version of this report was published in the Journal of Children and Media

AUTHOR(S)

Sonia Livingstone; Monica Bulger

MORE PUBLICATIONS