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Children's Rights - Participation
in Civil Society

Coordinator group 1: Natalie Kaufman , Associate Faculty member of the Institute on Family and Neighborhood Life at Clemson University, Clemson, S.C., United States.

This initiative comes from Childwatch International Research Network. A group of researchers has proposed a cross-cultural and cross-generational study on perceptions of children and adults about what constitutes good citizenship and participation and attitudes and behaviors conducive to nation building. The group will create sample groups in five societies experiencing different challenges to their democracies. Each sample group will consist of 100 children from urban communities, and 100 children from rural communities, as well as adults from these communities.

Results will be presented at the conference, but the theme will be open for papers and communication from individual participants.


Coordinator group 2: Anil Kumar , Associate Professor, Unit for Child and Youth Research, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India

This is also Childwatch International Research Network initiated study group. Their special focus is on the “Socio-Cultural Context of Child Participation in the Asia Pacific Region”. The group has members from Australia , China , India and Thailand and will perform a cross national study in these countries. The group consider that the diversity of traditions and attitudes to childhood presents a unique opportunity to gain an understanding of the concept and status of child participation as it historically and currently exists. This understanding will enable the researchers to move towards the groups second objective of identifying the major factors supporting and limiting child participation in specific countries. Acknowledging the link between child participation and citizenship the research will explore this relationship between participation and citizenship, as it emerges conceptually and in practice.

Ongoing research and results from pre-conference workshops will be presented at the conference in 2005, but the thematic session will be open for papers and posters from individual participants.