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A Handbook of Children and Young People's Participation by Barry Percy-Smith

A Handbook of Children and Young People's Participation


A Handbook of Children and Young People's Participation by Barry Percy-Smith

A Handbook of Children and Young People's Participation brings together key thinkers and practitioners from diverse contexts across the globe to provide an authoritative overview of contemporary theory and practice around children's participation. Promoting the participation of children and young people - in decision-making and policy development, and as active contributors to everyday family and community life - has become a central part of policy and programme initiatives in both majority and minority worlds. This book presents the most useful recent work in children's participation as a resource for academics, students and practitioners in childhood studies, children's rights and welfare, child and family social work, youth and community work, governance, aid and development programmes. The book introduces key concepts and debates, and presents a rich collection of accounts of the diverse ways in which children's participation is understood and enacted around the world, interspersed with reflective commentaries from adults and young people. It concludes with a number of substantial theoretical contributions that aim to take forward our understanding of children's participation. The emphasis throughout the text is on learning from the complexity of children's participation in practice to improve our theoretical understanding, and on using those theoretical insights to challenge practice, with the aim of realising children's rights and citizenship more fully.


'This landmark book reveals how much our understanding of children's right to participate has grown in the twenty years since the launch of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. It is a basic resource for anyone who believes in children's rights and capacities as citizens.' - Roger A. Hart, City University of New York, USA The Handbook will be an essential resource for anyone embarking on a child participation initiative as well as for students and scholars in childhood research and children's rights.' - Martin Woodhead, Open University, UK 'The contributors to this ambitious and extremely accessible volume on children's participation are to be congratulated for their ground-breaking work...The Handbook is an essential read for scholars, policy-makers, practitioners and children's rights advocates.' - Jo Boyden, University of Oxford, UK I found this volume very informative and intellectually stimulating. The phenomena described and the issues debated are indeed familiar. This Handbook is well worth a careful reading, and I recommend it with enthusiasm. -Social Work with Groups'

About the Author

Barry Percy-Smith is Reader in Childhood and Participatory Practice at the SOLAR Action Research Centre, University of the West of England, Bristol, UK. He has extensive experience using participatory and 'whole system' action inquiry approaches in research, evaluation and development projects with children, young people, practitioners and policy makers. He is Coordinator of the Children's Participation Learning Network, an international forum for critical debate about children and young people's participation, and has published and presented numerous papers on the subject. Nigel Thomas is Professor of Childhood and Youth Research at the University of Central Lancashire, UK, and Co-Director of The Centre, which exists to promote and research children and young people's participation, inclusion and empowerment. He has twenty years' experience of social work practice and has taught and researched extensively in the field of children's welfare, rights and participation.

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Book Info

Publication date

11th August 2009


Barry Percy-Smith

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Routledge an imprint of Taylor & Francis Ltd


404 pages


Child & developmental psychology



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