The Children’s Rights and Business Atlas helps businesses and industries assess potential and actual impacts on the lives of children and guides the integration of children’s rights into due diligence practices and procedures.
Children are impacted by businesses every day in a variety of ways: as consumers, community members, workers, and dependents of workers. Therefore, children’s rights – like all human rights – are impacted by company policies, products, operations, sourcing activities and business relationships.
"Children are among the most marginalized and vulnerable members of society and can be disproportionately, severely, and permanently impacted by business activities, operations, and relationships." Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General on Business and Human Rights, Professor John Ruggie
Beyond child labour and philanthropic corporate social responsibility, in many cases the broader impacts of business on children are often overlooked. The Atlas is designed to help companies to better understand and manage their impacts on children.
Also underpinning the Atlas methodology is the Children’s Rights and Business Principles. Developed by UNICEF, the UN Global Compact and Save the Children, the Children’s Rights and Business Principles guide companies on a full range of actions they can take to respect children’s rights in the workplace, marketplace and community and environment. The Atlas translates the 10 Children’s Rights and Business Principles into three Indices:
What is the Atlas?
Using publicly available country data and industry analysis, and practical due diligence tools and guidance, the Children’s Rights and Business Atlas equips businesses with insights needed to assess and manage their impact on the rights of children in the workplace, marketplace and community and environment – and target due diligence approaches.
Conduct a country-by-country assessment of children’s rights in the workplace, marketplace, and community and environment using our country data, indices, analysis and tools.
Evaluate where and how your industry is impacting children’s rights in the workplace, marketplace, and community and environment using the industry analysis.
Put respect and support for children’s rights into practice using our due diligence resources.
Country data and country analysis
Screen children's rights across operating locations and the supply chain
Benchmark priority countries against one another
Understand how your industry impacts children's rights
Due diligence guidance
Integrate children's rights into your policies and procedures
Why is it useful?
Businesses, investors and organisations alike need to understand how their activities impact children’s rights. The Children’s Rights and Business Atlas helps businesses and industries to mitigate and prevent negative impacts, and positively impact the lives of children and guide the integration of children’s rights into due diligence practices and procedures. Key reasons to use the Atlas include:
Companies need to understand how their operations impact children’s rights across the globe because businesses have the responsibility to respect and support children’s rights, as outlined in the Children’s Rights and Business Principles. The Atlas allows users to navigate the breadth and depth of children’s rights issues across the globe.
The Atlas enables comparisons between countries and regions and complements hard data with qualitative facts about countries and industries. Through this information, companies can build better adaptability in their supply chains and improve relations with suppliers where needed.
How do I use the Atlas?
How can I identify and prioritise children’s rights issues?
Assess children’s rights by exploring the data for a particular country or use our three indices: Children’s Rights in the Workplace Index, Children’s Rights in the Marketplace Index and Children’s Rights in the Community and Environment Index.
What is an index and how are children’s rights measured?
An index is a tool that quantifies fulfilment of children’s rights issues across countries, and which allows businesses to assess their impacts and issues of interest. Each index in the Atlas is made up of a set of quantitative and qualitative indicators to evaluate achievement of children’s rights in each dimension. Go to the methodology section to learn more about the data, structure, indicators and sources for each index.
What does a low score mean?
In each index, countries receive a score between 0 and 10 based on the status of children’s rights legal frameworks, enforcement and outcomes. A score closer to 0 reflects a need for basic children’s rights due diligence processes. On the other hand, high scores reflect a need for companies to engage enhanced and heightened due diligence efforts.
Can I assess multiple countries of interest?
Benchmark countries of interest using the country selection tool. The tool enables you to ‘dig deep’ into the indicators and understand where heightened due diligence may be necessary.
How does my industry impact children’s rights?
Refer to the industry analysis to understand the impact that is often found on children’s rights in the workplace, marketplace and the community and environment in select industries.
How can I integrate children’s rights into my company’s due diligence procedures?
To live up to the obligation to respect children’s rights, businesses should integrate children’s rights into social, environmental and human rights due diligence. Several due diligence tools are profiled on the website.
Please note that the Atlas is best viewed using Chrome, Firefox or Safari to ensure optimal functionality of the tool.
Who created the Atlas?
The Children’s Rights and Business Atlas was jointly developed by UNICEF and the Global Child Forum, with the goal of creating a business-friendly resource providing businesses with the data, analysis and tools they need to make informed decisions in the best interest of children.
UNICEF is an integral part of the United Nations, and works with governments, civil society organizations and other partners worldwide to advance children’s rights to survival, protection, development and participation, guided by the Convention on the Rights of the Child. UNICEF is a UN humanitarian and development program working in 190 countries for the rights of every child. UNICEF has spent 70 years working to improve the lives of children and their families. UNICEF’s children’s rights and business work promotes the corporate responsibility to respect and support children’s rights in the workplace, marketplace and community, alongside working with governments to protect and fulfil children’s rights.
Founded in 2009 by the Swedish Royal Family, Global Child Forum is a leading forum for children’s rights and business dedicated to innovative thinking, knowledge-sharing and networking. We believe in the power and responsibility of business, working in partnership with all parts of society, to create a prosperous, sustainable and just society for the world’s children. In addition to our forums, Global Child Forum delivers research perspectives, best practices and risk assessment tools designed to unlock opportunities for business to integrate children’s rights into their operations and communities
When will the Atlas cover all countries?
Currently, the website features data for 195 countries, and includes 11 country analysis narratives and 4 industry spotlights to support this data. Going forward, data for 195 countries will be updated annually and additional narratives, as well as new due diligence tools, will be included and revised as we conduct further research and engage with relevant stakeholders.