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What is the Children’s Rights and Business Atlas?

The Children’s Rights and Business Atlas is an interactive, data-driven platform enabling companies to realise their significant potential to respect and support children’s rights throughout their business operations and investments. Through indices, global interactive maps and country scorecards, the Atlas will provide a quantitative assessment on the degree to which children’s rights are protected within 198 countries and territories and across 10 business industries. The atlas provides an average national picture based on multiple data sources, and is meant to encourage businesses to investigate in what ways they may impact children’s rights.

The Atlas is a joint collaboration between UNICEF and the Global Child Forum. Underpinning the Atlas are the Children’s Rights and Business Principles (the Principles): a 10-point charter that sets out actions that companies can take to respect and support children’s rights. The Principles guide companies on the range of actions that can be taken in the workplace, marketplace and community to respect and support children’s rights.

Atlas overview

Hover over image to see index and industry definitions

Why use the Children’s Rights and Business Atlas?

Businesses have the responsibility to respect and support children’s rights, as outlined in the Children’s Rights and Business Principles. Therefore they need to understand how their operations impact children’s rights across the globe. The Atlas enables companies to understand the complex and multiple ways in which they affect children’s rights, both directly and indirectly.

Through comprehensive global data sets, the Atlas helps companies mitigate the risk of being associated with children’s rights violations and legal non-compliance. The Atlas will also help companies realise the significant potential they have to generate positive change and maximum benefit for children.

By placing children at the centre of the data, the Atlas enables businesses to assess the potential impact of their operations and activities on children. Children are not only recipients of goods and services, they are crucial stakeholders and should feature heavily in business strategies. The Atlas provides detailed information to enable businesses to work within their sphere of influence, to catalyse change and positively impact children’s rights.

What are the limitations of the Children’s Rights and Business Atlas?

Conceptual limitations

The Atlas has been developed as a simplified risk assessment tool to help businesses identify and understand the risk of children’s rights violations, and to flag areas for proactive multi-stakeholder engagement. The Atlas is designed to give a broad indication of the risks to children’s rights in the context of business activity, and opportunities for engagement in each country on a global scale. The Atlas expresses national averages, and does not account for socioeconomic inequities of any marginalised groups within countries, nor issues specific to sub-national or disputed regions.

The information from the Atlas may be used to inform a broader human rights due diligence process. The Atlas should be considered as only one of several resources to help companies evaluate children’s rights. Businesses looking to take proactive steps on children’s rights should seek to engage with children’s rights experts and stakeholders – including UNICEF – or directly with national or local governments.

Research limitations

The Atlas is constructed using open-source data and information obtained from third parties sources – all of which are referenced below. The Atlas uses a triangulation approach to cross verify and validate data and information obtained from academic, intergovernmental, governmental and independent (i.e., business or non-governmental) sources. A minimum of three sources were used to score each indicator question. If data or information was unavailable or inconsistent, the indicator may be scored using one source.

The varying level of coverage across the globe means that data and information may not be consistently available across all 198 countries. Information and data gaps are managed differently for qualitative and quantitative data. Where qualitative indicators lack sufficient country information, the scoring process does not penalise or reward the country’s score. Where quantitative data is missing for a particular country, the indicator is omitted from the country score. Users should refer to the index methodologies for specific information on indicator limitations.

How can I learn more about the Children’s Rights and Business Atlas?

If you have any questions about the Children’s Rights and Business Atlas, please contact us using the following email address: info@childrensrightsatlas.org

The Children’s Rights and Business Atlas has been jointly developed by UNICEF and the Global Child Forum. UNICEF is a leading humanitarian and development agency working globally for the rights of every child. UNICEF has spent nearly 70 years working to improve the lives of children and their families. Global Child Forum is an independent, global multi-stakeholder platform dedicated to advancing children’s rights through informed dialogue and thought leadership in support of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).