UNICEF, IOM Call for Papers on Data for Displaced Children
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UNICEF and IOM have issued a call for papers on data related to children and youth on the move to feed into the expert workshop ‘Children on the Move: Building Migration Data Capacities’.

These initiatives follow a joint call to action for better data for protecting children on the move, which was released in February 2018 by UNICEF, UNHCR, IOM, Eurostat and the OECD, as well as the adoption of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration by UN Member States in December 2018.

14 January 2019: The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) are calling on representatives from civil society organizations, national governments, international organizations, researchers and academics to contribute papers on methods to collect and analyze data on children and youth on the move. The selected papers will be presented during an expert workshop focusing on the data required for understanding the needs and ensuring the protection of migrant and forcibly displaced children.

Per the call for papers webpage, papers should either:

  • Seek to identify data and knowledge gaps;
  • Theoretically and methodologically contribute to the discussion on needed indicators; or
  • Describe new methods in data collection and analysis.

They should also address overarching issues in relation to, inter alia: risks and vulnerability; violence and exploitation; gender and gender-based violence; children in detention; non-discrimination and inclusion; access to essential services such as health and education; measuring long-term impacts of migration on the well-being of children; development and protection of returnee children; impacts of labor migration; accompanied and unaccompanied children; collection and measurement of stock and flow data; data collection in emergencies; big data, data protection and ethical issues; innovative data collection and analysis methods; and integration of data sources and data sharing. Papers should be submitted by 6 February 2019.

According to the organizers, papers will be reviewed by a UNICEF-IOM committee, and selected applicants will be invited to participate in the workshop and present their work. The workshop on ‘Children on the Move: Building Migration Data Capacities,’ scheduled to take place from 20-22 March 2019, in Rabat, Morocco, will aim to identify data and knowledge gaps, provide insights into which measurements and indicators are needed to strengthen the evidence base, and highlight new methods in data collection and analysis.

The workshop and call for papers follow a February 2018 joint call to action for better data for protecting children on the move. The call to action aims to address the data gaps that “make it difficult to get a real sense of the scale and patterns of global migration.”

Launched by UNICEF, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), IOM, Eurostat and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) during the intergovernmental negotiations on the Global Compact on Migration. The call to action urged UN Member States to consider: data on migration and migrants disaggregated by sex and age; issues relating to children affected by migration and displacement, such as information on human trafficking, access to education, health, nutrition and other essential services; and child protection and family reunification. It also stressed the need to make better use of existing data, and to develop new norms and practices for data sharing across sectors and agencies, encouraging further sharing on a local, national, regional and international level, while protecting children’s privacy and interests and ensuring ethical use of data. The joint call to action further asked countries to coordinate data collection and analysis within countries and across borders, and to develop a research agenda in order to understand and address the issues facing migrant and refugee children.

According to UNICEF, about 30 million children were living in forced displacement in 2017, which includes 12 million child refugees and child asylum seekers, and 17 million children living in internal displacement due to conflict and violence. The call to action notes that despite greater efforts made over the past decade to gather data, there are still data gaps related to children’s age and sex, their origin, destination and reasons behind their move, their vulnerabilities and needs, whether they move with their families or alone, how they fare along the way, and how migration and asylum policies affect them.

The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, also known as the Marrakech Compact on Migration, was adopted by UN Member States during the Intergovernmental Conference to Adopt the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration that took place in Marrakech, Morocco, from 10-11 December 2018. It was endorsed by the UNGA on 19 December 2018. [SDG Knowledge Hub coverage of migration compact and conference]

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