When Children Know Their Rights

Recent years have brought a growing social and public commitment to the promotion of children’s rights and children’s well-being around the world, and these have become important goals of all those striving to improve children’s lives. In spite of the intimate ideological connection between the concepts of children’s rights and children’s well-being, they have evolved separately both theoretically and empirically. In a new article published in the American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, authors present a study exploring the empirical association between these 2 concepts based on data from the International Survey on Children’s Well-Being. This unique survey explores children’s own perspectives on their well-being (subjective well-being), their perceptions and knowledge of their rights, and their reports on their right to participation. It includes data from more than 54,000 children aged 8–12 from 16 countries around the world. These results showed clear cross-national differences between children’s knowledge and perceptions of their rights and their reports on participation. Also, children’s participation in different contexts in their lives showed an association with their subjective well-being; a weaker association was found between children’s knowledge and perceptions of their rights. These results indicate that children’s right to participation and, to some degree, their knowledge and thinking about their rights is an indicator of their well-being.

For the abstract


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