Children as research collaborators : issues and reflections from a mobility study in sub-Saharan Africa.


This paper reflects on issues raised by work with children in an ongoing child mobility study in three sub-Saharan African countries: Ghana, Malawi and South Africa. There are now 70 school pupils of varying ages involved in the project, but the paper is particularly concerned with the participation of those children 14 years and under. The authors examine the significant ethical issues associated with working with younger child researchers, and linked questions concerning the spaces open to them in African contexts where local cultural constructions of childhood and associated economic imperatives (which commonly drive family and household endeavour) help shape the attitudes of adults to children’s rights and responsibilities and inter-generational power relations.


Abane, A.; Bourdillon, M.; Hampshire, K.; Mashiri, M.; Munthali, A.; Porter, G.; Robson, E. Children as Research Collaborators: Issues and Reflections from a Mobility Study in Sub-Saharan Africa. American Journal of Community Psychology (2010) 46 (1-2) 215-227. [DOI: 10.1007/s10464-010-9317-x]

Published 1 January 2010