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AIDS, public policy and child well-being

This study addresses one of the greatest challenges of our time: the damage caused by HIV and AIDS to the well-being of children and families. With 38.6 million people affected by HIV in 2006, with HIV prevalence at antenatal clinics exceeding 40 per cent in areas of Botswana and KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa), with nationwide adult prevalence in excess of the critical threshold of 20 per cent in several countries, and with the prospect of a rapid spread of the disease in large swathes of India, China and the Russian Federation, the future of child well-being is seriously threatened. Certainly, in the 50 or so countries affected by the disease, the Millennium Development Goals in the field of child survival, education, poverty and basic rights will be missed, often by a large margin.

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Climate change and children: a human security challenge

The study reviews the implications of climate change for children and future generations, drawing on relevant experiences in different sectors and countries of promoting child rights and well-being. It traces in considerable detail the pathways through which shifts in temperature and precipitation patterns create serious additional barriers to the achievement of the child survival, development and protection goals embraced by the international community. The role of children as vital participants and agents of change emerges as a key theme.

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Intersectional discrimination against children

This paper adds a perspective to existing research on child protection by engaging in a debate on intersectional discrimination and its relationship to child protection. The paper has a two-fold objective: (1) to further establish intersectionality as a concept to address discrimination against children; and (2) to illustrate the importance of addressing intersectionality within rights-based programmes of child protection.

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Best of UNICEF research 2014

Each year the Office of Research-Innocenti reviews submissions for the best research being published across all UNICEF offices: country programmes, National Committees, Regional Offices and headquarters divisions. The purpose of this activity is to showcase and recognize high-quality, high-impact research being done in the organization. At the end of the process each year the Office of Research-Innocenti issues a publication containing summaries of the papers considered to be of particular merit. In 2014, the summaries cover issues concerning child protection, cash transfers, ECD, maternal health, inclusive education, and WASH.

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Best of UNICEF research 2015

In addition to recognizing high quality research, the Best of UNICEF Research process aims to share findings with UNICEF colleagues and with the wider community concerned with achieving child rights. This year the competition received 99 applications With global reach, the 12 projects in the final selection cover many of the ‘traditional’ areas of UNICEF work (health, nutrition, sanitation and education), while also highlighting issues that have more recently gained prominence within the global policy agenda, such as social transfers, violence against children and school bullying, and various forms of inequality or exclusion. This publication provides summaries of these research projects, including methodology and results.

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Best of UNICEF research 2016

The Best of UNICEF competition identifies a number of studies that are assessed to be of particular merit on a number of criteria: in terms of the relevance and interest of the topic and findings; the rigour of their methodology; and the potential for impact, including lessons that could inform programmes elsewhere, or the capacity for replication or scaling up. Issues covered include health, education, WASH, child protection and social inclusion. There was also a strong emphasis on qualitative and mixed methods research, demonstrating the value of rigorous qualitative studies. A number of studies selected as of special merit in 2016 involved research directly with children and there is an increasing recognition that children’s perspectives are of primary importance. There was also a welcome attention to gender in some of the studies, including research with both adolescent boys and girls.

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Children, ICT and development: capturing the potential, meeting the challenges

ICTs are not a technical sphere detached from the complex realities of children’s lives. They are increasingly woven into the very fabric of life, in income-rich and increasingly in income-poor countries. It is clear that if there is no targeted engagement with these socio-technical innovations, they are likely to reinforce existing inequalities. It follows that a focus on children and on greater equity leads to an active and reflective engagement with the potential and challenges of ICT for development, targeting in particular marginalized children. This report serves as a key contribution on which to build informed dialogue and decision making, developed jointly between research, policy and practice.

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Heterogeneous impacts of an unconditional cash transfer programme on schooling: evidence from the Ghana LEAP Programme

The paper uses data from a quasi-experimental evaluation to estimate the impact of the Ghanaian Government’s unconditional cash transfer programme on schooling outcomes. It analyses the impacts for children by various subgroups – age, gender, cognitive ability – and finds consistent impacts. There are differences across gender, especially on secondary schooling, with enrollment significantly higher for boys 13 years or older. For girls, the effect of the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) programme is to improve current attendance among those who are already enrolled in school (across all age groups). The authors found a significant effect on the expenditure on schooling items such as uniforms and stationary for these groups, which helps to explain the pathway of impact because these out-of-pocket costs are typically important barriers to schooling in rural Ghana and most of Africa.

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Child poverty in Armenia: national multiple overlapping deprivation analysis

This report provides the first comprehensive national estimates of multidimensional child poverty in Armenia, measured using UNICEF’s Multiple Overlapping Deprivation Analysis (MODA) methodology. Dimensions and indicators for three age groups (0-5, 6-14 and 15-17) were selected as the result of a broad consultative process with key stakeholders convened by UNICEF Armenia. Based on nationally representative data from the Armenian Integrated Living Conditions Survey 2013/14, the study finds that 64 per cent of children under 18 are deprived in 2 or more dimensions, with a substantially higher rate in rural than in urban areas. The highest rates of deprivation are in access to utilities, quality housing and leisure activities. More than one in four children are both multidimensionally deprived and live in consumption-poor households, while more than one in three are deprived but do not live in poor households. The findings suggest that to target the most vulnerable children, policies should concentrate on closing the rural/urban divide in infrastructure and on strengthening social safety nets, especially in rural areas.

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Mainstreaming human rights in development: stories from the field

Human rights mainstreaming has become part of the core work of the United Nations development system. A United Development Group Human Rights Mainstreaming Mechanism (UNDG-HRM) was established in 2009 at the request of the United Nations Secretary-General. This mechanism aims to bolster system-wide coherence, collaboration, and support to Resident Coordinators and United Nations country teams, so that they can better provide support to Member States to strengthen national capacity for the promotion and protection of human rights. This publication is a first step in collecting the experiences of UN country teams in integrating human rights into their development work. The six case studies presented herein reflect the growing number of United Nations country teams supporting governments to fulfill international human rights commitments and to integrate human rights into national policies and programmes.

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The Millennium Development Goals report 2015

This report presents data and analysis evaluating the progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). It proves that, with targeted interventions, sound strategies, adequate resources and political will, even the poorest countries can make dramatic and unprecedented progress. The report also acknowledges uneven achievements and shortfalls in many areas. The work is not complete, and it must continue in the new development era.

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The effect of gender equality programming on humanitarian outcomes

Despite a number of developments in policy and practice aimed at integrating gender equality and women’s empowerment into humanitarian action, what remains missing is a strong evidence base that demonstrates just how gender equality programming is essential to ensuring an effective, inclusive, rights-based humanitarian response. To address this gap, UN Women—on behalf of the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Reference Group on Gender in Humanitarian Action and with co-funding from the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development of Canada—in 2013 commissioned the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) at the University of Sussex to undertake a research study, titled “The Effect of Gender Equality Programming on Humanitarian Outcomes”. Its aim was to assess whether or not such programming has improved humanitarian outcomes and, if so, why. This report presents the findings of this research, based on interviews with more than 2,000 crisis-affected households gathered for four case studies conducted in Kenya (the Dadaab refugee camps and the county of Turkana), Nepal and the Philippines. Drawing on both the qualitative and quantitative data collected, researchers were able to develop a unique new methodology for assessing the degree to which gender equality and women's empowerment has been integrated into humanitarian programmes, using inputs from the beneficiaries themselves. The report presents overall findings, draws comparative conclusions across the four case studies and discusses practical recommendations for integrating gender equality programming in future humanitarian interventions in ways that strengthen effectiveness and inclusiveness.

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Hearts and minds: women of India speak

This report acknowledges the “lived experiences” of women and girls in India at the grassroots level and ensures that the voices of those who remain socially, economically and geographically marginalized are meaningfully reflected in the emerging post-2015 development discourse and agenda. The analysis contained in this report is based on in-depth interviews with women and focus-group discussions with almost 200 elected women representatives. The report addresses issues that resonate with women all over the globe, such as women's empowerment, poverty, employment, health and education. The key findings from this report can be used to influence the global agenda setting, ensuring that the post-2015 framework does not make the same mistakes that the MDGs did.

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Enabling women’s contributions to the Indian Ocean Rim economies

The Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) represents one of the world’s most diverse and dynamic regional communities. While the people of the Indian Ocean Rim come from a variety of backgrounds, they rely on interconnected environments, institutions and markets for their livelihoods. They are united by a shared commitment to the prosperity of the region through inclusive, sustainable economic growth and women’s economic empowerment. This report identifies some of the key trends and critical issues for the Indian Ocean Rim Association Member States to address in support of women’s substantive gender equality and economic advancement. It provides an overview of existing data on key aspects of women’s economic empowerment in Indian Ocean Rim countries using publicly available and comparable data. The report develops a simple baseline, primarily using data from 2010 onward in some of the areas that describe women’s participation in the economy and their opportunities for advancement in business and economic leadership. It also explores some of the key enabling factors that support women’s increased labour force participation and are associated with improvements in the terms and conditions of their employment, leadership and entrepreneurship.

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Towards gender equality in humanitarian response: addressing the needs of women and men in Gaza

The already grave humanitarian situation caused by the 18-month-long blockade of the Gaza Strip was compounded by Israel's 23-day military offensive in December 2008 and January 2009. The social and economic repercussions spread across all sectors of Gazan society, but were also mediated by men's and women's gender roles and identities. Ignoring the different needs, capacities and contributions of women, girls, boys and men can mean that some segments of the population are overlooked, sometimes with destructive consequences. In the rush to provide humanitarian assistance, the appeal to pay attention to gender issues may seem irrelevant. However, it is crucial to ensure that the most necessary and appropriate assistance is offered to the population as a whole. This guidebook sets forth standards for the integration of gender issues from the outset of a complex emergency, aiming to enable humanitarian services to reach their target audience with the maximum positive effect. The main framework for this guidebook is based on the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) handbook on gender and humanitarian action, and it builds on the gender needs assessment survey conducted by the UN Inter-Agency Gender Task Force in March 2009. Main issues that arose from that survey were subsequently discussed in focus groups in various communities in Gaza in April and May 2009, organized by UNIFEM.The findings of the focus groups form the core of the data used in this guidebook.

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Manual: multi-sectoral approach to women’s rights in Africa

Even though many African governments have ratified international and regional human rights treaties and have made commitments to respect, promote and protect women's rights and to eliminate discrimination against women, the translation of these commitments into national laws, policies and programmes remains a challenge. As a response, UN Women has developed this manual as a methodological tool to promote the adoption and use of a multi-sectoral approach to achieve women's rights. Through practical guidance, the manual aims to support the African Union and its member states to fast track delivery on commitments to women's rights and empowerment. It introduces an implementation framework that promotes the integration of women's rights into all sectors of government and development endeavours. The framework also calls for inter-ministerial coordination to ensure improved efficiency, accountability, and communication across sectors; the establishment of a strong technical and advisory services unit at the regional and national levels; and an important and strengthened role for national machineries for women's affairs. Overall, the manual stresses the important role of government-led partnerships, such as with the African Union, donor countries, the United Nations system, civil society, organizations and unions, to make women's rights a reality.

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The future women want: a vision of sustainable development for all

Twenty years ago in Rio de Janiero, UN Member States unanimously agreed that “women have a vital role in environmental management and development. Their full participation is therefore essential to achieve sustainable development. Twenty years later, we still have a long way to go. In this publication UN Women highlights the commitments made on gender equality, and explores women's contributions to sustainable development and policy around the world. Focusing on priority areas—safe drinking water and sanitation; food security and sustainable agriculture; sustainable cities; decent work and the green economy; health and education—it details the actions needed to establish a gender-responsive development framework, and ensure an enabling environment for women's full participation in sustainable development.

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Paid work, women’s empowerment and inclusive growth: transforming the structures of constraint

Drawing on household survey data collected in Egypt, Ghana and Bangladesh as part of the Pathways of Women’s Empowerment Research Partners’ Consortium, this report provides insights into the ‘resource’ pathways that enhance women’s agency and thereby contribute to the inclusiveness of the economic growth process. Moreover, it looks at the the extent to which the structure of economic opportunities, generated by a country’s growth strategies, translated into positive impacts on women’s lives in these three country contexts. Briefly, the findings suggest that economic growth alone does not promote gender equality. Rather, unless patterns of growth generate reasonable quality jobs for women, the extent to which greater gender equality is achieved will depend on the actions of the state and civil society. Greater gender equality, in turn, does have the potential to contribute to inclusive growth when it is achieved in education, employment and other valued resources. In particular, women’s access to valued resources, such as decent jobs and higher education, can have positive distributional implications for growth.

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Global guidance on addressing school-related gender-based violence

More than 246 million children are subjected to gender-based violence in or around schools every year. This is a violation of their human rights, and a form of gender-discrimination that has far-reaching physical, psychological and educational consequences. The Global Guidance provides key information to governments, policy-makers, teachers, practitioners and civil society who wish to take concrete action against school-related gender-based violence. It introduces approaches, methodologies, tools and resources that have shown positive results in preventing and responding to school-related gender-based violence.

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Gender equality, child development and job creation: how to reap the ‘triple dividend’ from early childhood education and care services

This brief synthesizes research findings, analysis and policy recommendations for realizing the triple dividend from early childhood education and care (ECEC) services. ECEC services have come to occupy an important place on the global policy agenda. While some developed countries have long invested in this area, a growing number of developing countries are following suit. As those who carry out the bulk of childcare—as unpaid caregivers as well as service providers in day-care and preschool institutions—women have a huge stake in this issue. However, the implications for women, as mothers or childcare workers, have been insufficiently reflected in the work of international organizations and many national-level policies that tend to focus mainly on children.Well-designed investments in ECEC services can have major economic and social pay-offs for families, individuals and societies at large by: (a) facilitating women’s labour force participation, (b) enhancing children’s capabilities and (c) creating decent jobs in the paid care sector. But this triple dividend is not automatic. It needs to be built into service design and delivery. This brief discusses different mechanisms for financing, delivering and regulating ECEC services and highlights promising avenues for realizing the triple dividend. It argues that the key is high-quality childcare that is available, affordable, accessible and compatible with the needs of working parents.

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Women migrant workers' human rights

UN Women's Transforming our Future series introduces brief thematic documents with the goal of raising awareness on the importance of addressing such problems as inequality, the legal framework that mandates women's human rights protection, as well as to promote solutions from all areas of society. This leaflet presents central international instruments for the protection of the human rights of women migrant workers, and describes the link between gender and migration.

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Policy and operational messages to support UN Country Teams in integrating human rights into the implementation of the 2030 Agenda

The messages in this document are envisaged to provide a common understanding for the UN system on how human rights can be integrated and should inform the planning and programming process as well as policy guidance for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The messages focus on: a) how to align the SDGs with the country’s existing human rights commitments; b) how to fulfill the pledge to ‘leave no one behind’ and ‘reach the furthest behind first’; c) how to ensure active and meaningful participation in the preparation of the national SDG action plans; and, d) how to build robust accountability frameworks in the implementation of these national plans.

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The United Nations in Vietnam: 2008 One Plan annual report

The “One UN Initiative” in Viet Nam and the One Plan are in response to the Ha Noi Core Statement and, as outlined in the Report of the High-Level Panel on System-Wide Coherence, emphasize the need for the UN to move away from traditional service delivery and project implementation towards upstream policy advice. At the heart of the One Plan is the overall goal to enhance programmatic synergies amongst various UN interventions, eliminate any programmatic duplication and overlap, and deliver more effectively “as One”. The purpose of the One Plan Annual Report is to provide the Government of Vietnam and development partners with an account of how the implementation of the One Plan progresses. The report includes concrete examples on how the joint planning and programming process has led to a stronger and more cohesive UN by moving towards upstream policy advice in a number of key cross- cutting areas. The report also provides details on how resources from the One Plan Fund were allocated against the five Outcomes and corresponding Outputs of the One Plan.

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Mid-term review of the UN development assistance framework for Malawi (2008-2011)

In pursuit of economic growth and poverty reduction, the Malawi Government has articulated development goals in the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS, 2006-2011), to which the UN’s Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF, 2008-2011) is aligned.The Mid-Term Review provides an opportunity for the UN country team to assess collective performance in respect of ‘delivering as one.’ The review has been carried out as a participatory, self-evaluation exercise focusing on UN programs and processes over the past two years; current MGDS-UNDAF alignment; and expected results for UNDAF implementation 2010/2011.

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Mainstreaming the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: reference guide to UN country teams

This document is designed as a reference guide for UN Country Teams (UNCTs), under the leadership of the UN Resident Coordinators, that wish to support Member States and national stakeholders in adapting the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to national contexts (“mainstreaming”) while protecting its integrity. The document covers eight implementation guidance areas that can serve as the basis for UNCT assistance at the national level, sub-national and local levels.

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