I am currently trying to scope out my methodology chapter. There has been a lot that has been said about empowering children and youth and investing in them. But, do we invest in them methodologically?From the outset, most research processes begin and end with the researcher. With a growing trend towards action and participatory research, there is greater inclusion of the researched within the process. But, with a large amount of research being conducted with those under the age of 18 years, how engaged are children within the research process?

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Tags: action, children, participatory, research, youth


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Comment by Fiona Ngarachu on June 22, 2013 at 2:20am

Thank you all. this has been quite helpful. I have had some very interesting insights working with the young people. Their input has helped develop my research design as well as enabled me to access data. What i did is train adolescents in conducting focus groups and interviews with their fellow students on a particular topic. I am not in the process of comparing the data collected with the young people with that collected by adults to show that this is a valid method. 

Comment by Fiona Ngarachu on May 4, 2012 at 6:10am

Additional resources from DFID who have taken this on board and developed some toolkits.



But, one confusion i am having in the literature is....Engagment versus empowerment. In the former they seem to imply that engagement is simply listening and taking the view of young people into account. The latter seek to go beyond them and give them the skills and capacities to take control and have decision making roles. My question is, in taking a strong empowerment stance, are we not reproducing power relationships as US vs them. That the youth need to take what has been denied to them (Power). Especially in Africa, will this not contribute to the perception that power and control are THE end result to be gained?

Comment by Fiona Ngarachu on May 4, 2012 at 5:42am

Thank you guys! These links and thoughts are much appreciated!! My project focuses on identity specifically understanding how children and young people form their ethnic identity as a way to a greater understanding on how peace and social cohesion can be achieved.

Again. Much appreciated....Keep the ideas flowing!!

Comment by Omowumi on May 2, 2012 at 4:51pm


Thank you!!! Thank you!!! Thank you!!! (All three of you).

In these few words, you have put a lot of grease to my elbows for my work on Children and Peace Education. These references are great! Thank you again!

Updates coming soon on 'Fight Right'...!

Comment by Ursula Armstrong on May 2, 2012 at 5:30am

HI, I live in Italy and work in the field of peace education. There is a very interesting group of educational workers in a town called Reggio Emilia who mostly work with pre-school kids and have developed some very interesting ideas on the participation of children within the educational and research process. They are not strictly linked to issues of conflict or peace education but are certainly worth looking into. Here's a link to the Wikipedia page:


Hope it's of interest if you haven't already come accross them.

Comment by Adrian Bergmann on April 30, 2012 at 10:49am

Save the Children has done good work on developing this sort of methodology.

As part of an ongoing program, Children's participation in armed conflict, post conflict and peace building, running in countries in Afria, Asia, and Latin America, they've documented the work with children and young people as participants and researchers. You can find information, including on what they've termed 'formative dialogue research', a kit of tools, a handbook, and more on the program's suboptimal website.


Kit of Tools - for Participatory Research and Evaluation with Child...

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