26 October 2023

Prospects for Children in 2024: Cooperation in a Fragmented World

Prospects for Children in 2024: Cooperation in a Fragmented World is the latest edition of the Global Outlook, a series of reports produced each year by UNICEF Innocenti – Global Office of Research and Foresight, which look to the key trends affecting children and young people over the following 12 months and beyond., As we enter 2024, the world stands at a pivotal juncture. We can choose a path marked by increased global collaboration – a path that embraces innovation, knowledge sharing, policy transfer, and equitable growth. Or, there's a different course that could be taken, one which might entail less unity and a more protectionist approach, potentially…, 1. Geopolitical shifts and the risk of conflict may threaten children’s survival and well-being – but avenues for accountability and cooperation hold promise., In 2024, major powers will continue competing to expand their military, political, economic, and technological influence globally, including within multilateral institutions. Meanwhile, small and middle powers, including many in the Global South, are distancing themselves from confrontation between the major powers by forging new, flexible…, 2. Economic fragmentation threatens families’ livelihoods, children’s development and youth employment – but economic solidarity, market collaboration and investing in future skills can safeguard children’s rights and futures., Economic fragmentation, often driven by geopolitical interests and strategic considerations, is projected to widen disparities between nations in 2024. This unravelling of global economic integration threatens to undermine years of prosperity, progress, and innovation. It also adds fiscal pressure at a time when child poverty is rising in many…, 3. A fragmented multilateral system is not delivering on key issues for children – but it has a chance to reset its course in 2024 through global governance and financing reforms., The year 2024 will be pivotal for addressing a fragmented multilateral system that is failing on issues such as peace, security, climate change, financing for developing countries and the enforcement of normative standards – all of which can have an impact on children and their rights. Many countries, especially those in the Global South, believe…, 4. Developing economies still face structural inequities in the international financial architecture, limiting their ability to invest in children – but reforms to lending approaches and new technologies offer hope., Structural inequities in international financing will continue to limit developing countries’ investments in children in 2024. Excessive debt burdens, high remittance costs, overreliance on unpredictable economic monetary policies, and lack of voice in financial governance penalize poorer states. Debt crises triggered by these factors hurt…, 5. Global democracy will face unprecedented risks presented by disinformation and higher levels of political violence – but positive forces, including those led by children and youth, may still reverse the democratic decline., Democratic backsliding and youth dissatisfaction with democracy have been unfolding for years. But in 2024, as many nations face critical elections, two concerning trends emerge. First, advances in the digital technology for large language models and generative AI have introduced dangerous new disinformation capabilities that can create convincing…, 6. Fast-tracking transition to green energy is reshaping critical mineral and labour markets – if managed responsibly, cooperatively and justly, it can benefit children., In 2024, the accelerated transition to green energy will continue. This transition will be driven by volatility in energy markets, growth in the deployment of clean energy technology and policy imperatives like the development of new Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). A faster shift to green energy brings significant benefits to children…, 7. El Niño, mosquito-borne diseases and water scarcity threaten children’s health and well-being – but greater collaboration, holistic programming and technological innovation can mitigate the negative impacts and protect children., Throughout 2024, climate change will continue to pose many threats to children’s health and nutrition. Three key forces stand out: the continuation of El Niño; the rise in outbreaks of mosquito-borne diseases due to climate change; and water scarcity. The 2024 El Niño could be even hotter and more dangerous to people and the planet than in 2023.…, 8. Potential impacts of unchecked technologies spark fear and concern for children’s well-being – but proactive policy and global digital cooperation can place children at the centre of responsible design and regulation., The digital environment continues to shape children’s lives. Advances such as artificial intelligence (AI) bring new opportunities for children's learning, health care and development. Because new technology also poses risks for children, striking a regulatory balance will be a 2024 priority for three main reasons: First, apprehension about the…, Prospects for Children: Cooperation in a Fragmented World 2 0 2 4 G L O B A L O U T L O O K This document is interactive and designed for digital viewing. Please consider the environment and refrain from printing. Eight trends for 2024 Geopolitical shifts and the risk of conflict Economic fragmentation A fragmented multilateral system Structural…
20 October 2023

Child Poverty in the Midst of Wealth

Report Card 18 presents current levels and historic trends of child poverty (monetary and multi-dimensional) in 43 OECD/EU countries; projections of future trends in view of current crises; a detailed analysis of policy responses to child poverty in each country; and practical policy recommendations for tackling child poverty. In a time of general…, The UNICEF Innocenti Report Card 18 reviews the status of child poverty in 43 high income and upper middle-income countries of the European Union (EU) and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). It provides data and assesses the progress – or lack of progress – that these countries have made towards eliminating child…, Child poverty: The current picture, Overall, in 40 countries of the EU and OECD for which data was available, poverty dropped by 8 per cent over a period of about seven years. In other words, 6 million fewer children lived in poverty in 2021 than in 2014. The country with the lowest child poverty rate is Denmark, where 9.9 per cent of children are poor. About 1 in 10 children live…, Prosperity: No guarantee for poor children, The data in Report Card 18 indicate that national wealth does not guarantee that a country will prioritize the fight against child poverty. Indeed, there is only a weak tendency for the wealthiest countries to have lower child poverty rates.7 Countries with similar national incomes sometimes have very different levels of child poverty. For example…, Supporting children and families, Meaningful and lasting improvements to the lives of children in poor households requires governments to invest in multiple services that touch children’s lives, including education, health, nutrition and labour market policies. Social protection is particularly important for children because they are more vulnerable to poverty and its consequences…, Recommendations, In some of the world’s richest countries, much more needs to be done to protect children from poverty. In 2015, countries around the world signed up to the Sustainable Development Goals, a plan for creating a better world that included a call to end poverty in all its forms, everywhere. In the high-income and upper middle-income countries of the…, Expand child-sensitive social protection, Social protection is essential for eradicating poverty – both in its monetary and nonmonetary forms. Through redistributing incomes, it is also a key element of reducing inequality. The countries included in this Report Card have made commitments, for example by ratifying the Convention on the Rights of the Child, to ensuring that all children can…, Improve and ensure access to essential services, Alongside financial support to households with children, the multidimensional nature of child poverty requires a second strand of policy to ensure that all children have access to basic services, beyond the household, that are essential for their well-being and development., Ensure decent work and family-friendly policies, Decent work with adequate pay and conditions offers a vital and dependable source of income for households with children. The success of Slovenia in reducing child poverty has been in part based on effective labour market policies. As well as boosting opportunities for such employment, policymakers should consider a comprehensive set of family-…, Act to reduce the inequalities in poverty risks, The evidence on the persistence of inequalities in poverty risks for children in many minority groups shows that it requires ongoing attention and effective action. Over and above universal provisions, additional tailored measures need to be taken to ensure that all children, and their households, have access to social protection, key services and…, Build support for child poverty reduction, Effective child poverty reduction policies require governments to place child poverty reduction at the heart of their priorities. Governments also have a critical leading role to play in building broad support for child poverty reduction through the engagement of other actors, including civil society, community leaders, employers, trade unions and…, Generate better data, The ability to learn from other countries, through comparative international analysis, rests on the availability of high-quality, comparable data. But there are still many gaps in such data. Moreover, data about the depth of child poverty – the poverty gap – are scarce. These shortcomings hamper the meaningful monitoring of children’s income…, Involve children in the poverty debate, We still know surprisingly little about children’s own ideas of what poverty is. When children have been asked, their views and ideas have often differed from those of adults. The opportunity for children to become involved in policy areas affecting their lives is supported by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. Their…, 1 Innocenti Report Card 18Child Poverty in the Midst of Wealth Child Povertyin the Midstof Wealth Innocenti Report Card 18 2 Innocenti Report Card 18Child Poverty in the Midst of Wealth Executive summary In a time of general prosperity, more than 69 million children live in poverty in some of the worlds richest countries. Poverty is often defined…