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Ethical Research Involving Children

Ethical considerations when applying behavioural science in projects focused on children.

Tindall, K., Hayward, L., Hunt, E., & Hickler, B. (2021). Ethical considerations when applying behavioural science in projects focused on children. Innocenti Discussion Papers No.3, UNICEF: Florence.

Abstract: Evidence increasingly shows applied behavioural science can positively impact childhood development and contribute to reducing inequalities. However, it is important for practitioners to reflect on the ethical considerations. For example, are you confident that the intervention is unlikely to have unintended harmful consequences? Or, is it easy for child recipients to opt out of the intervention?

To better understand these impacts, we consulted children in Australia, Chile and Ghana, interviewed subject matter experts and practitioners, and conducted a targeted literature review. This paper distils our findings and provides examples of how evidence-based interventions can meaningfully impact children’s futures. It is accompanied by a toolkit to guide and support practitioners through key ethical decision points.

This Innocenti Discussion Paper is freely available to view and download via the Publisher’s Link below.

Publisher’s Link

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