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Human Rights-based Approach to Programming

Social Accountability

© UNICEF/UNI106625/Crouch
Salim Shekh show's off the comprehensive hand drawn map of the community at the Rishi Aurobindo Colony where they are undertaking a range of tasks headed by Community Mapping.

People-led, bottom-up and demand-driven accountability initiatives can make an important contribution towards enhancing accountability for international child rights commitments. UNICEF therefore supports various social accountability initiatives for children’s rights across all regions, which includes promoting the participation of girls and boys at key levels of local government processes, as well as supporting the monitoring and tracking of budget implementation through community-based monitoring. 

These efforts support children and adolescents in fulfilling their full potential as agents of change. They are also contributing to the removal of barriers to service access and quality, extending opportunities for rights-fulfilling services to marginalized and excluded groups of children and families, and thus advancing equity.

UNICEF, in collaboration with the UK National Committee for UNICEF, organized a two-day workshop in London in March 2014, bringing together social accountability researchers, practitioners and child rights experts to discuss how civil society engagement can help accelerate results for children by holding governments accountable with a particular focus on the Post-2015 Development Agenda.

Informed by this workshop and a research mapping of local and informal accountability mechanisms conducted for UNICEF by New York University (NYU) Law School students as part of NYU’s International Organizations Clinic, UNICEF commissioned the working paper 'Accountability for Children's Rights' (2015), which presents a framework for systematizing social accountability in practice. In the course of researching this paper, more than 35 successful cases of accountability initiatives for children’s rights were identified, many of which demonstrated both efficiency and equity gains for children, such as increased budgets, improved or extended services, and enhanced citizen-State dialogue.

UNICEF is also an active member in the Global Partnership for Social Accountability (GPSA), housed at the World Bank. 

Accountability for Children's Rights

A Research Mapping of Local and Informal
Accountability Mechanisms
 - 2015



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