Improving Awareness and Understanding of the Government's Obligation to Involve Children in Decision-Making

Impact: Public Policy Impact, Societial Impact


This case study reports the impact on awareness and understanding of children’s rights by policy makers, practitioners and children. This was achieved through the development of a legally sound and research-based but user-friendly model for understanding and implementing Article 12 of the UNCRC. This model has been used by the Northern Ireland and Irish Children’s Commissioner, Non-governmental organisations, other Higher Education Institutions, government departments and teachers to inform policy makers, practitioners and children and young people about the obligation to give children’s views due weight in decision-making. The research model and the practical impact it has had has extended understanding beyond the traditionally used concept of the “voice of the child” or “pupil voice” by emphasizing the legal obligation to ensure that children’s views have an influence on decision-making, with direct effects on policy and practice and also enabling government to fulfil its additional obligation under Article 42 of the UNCRC to ensure that the rights in the UNCRC are widely known among adults and children alike.
Impact statusOngoing
Category of impactPublic Policy Impact, Societial Impact