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Child Indicators Research

, Volume 4, Issue 2, pp 249–267 | Cite as

Championing Choice—Lessons Learned from Children and Young People About Research and Their Involvement

  • Tim Moore
  • Vicky Saunders
  • Morag McArthurEmail author
Article

Abstract

Over the past 5 years researchers from the Institute of Child Protection Studies have talked with vulnerable children and young people in an attempt to better understand their lives, their perceptions and how they might be better supported around issues such as homelessness, parental drug and alcohol use, caring, juvenile justice and out of home care. Researchers have confronted a myriad of challenges in recruiting, meaningfully engaging and supporting the participation of children with diverse needs and preferences as well as presenting their findings in a way that is helpful to both commissioning bodies and for children and young people. This paper, whilst drawing on current literature, predominantly provides a series of reflections from researchers working with vulnerable children and young people and from young participants themselves about some of the ethical and practical challenges that have emerged when talking to children and young people about sensitive issues. Specifically this paper will discuss issues concerning gatekeepers, children’s participation and their rights to whether how and when to be involved.

Keywords

Research with children Participation Gatekeepers Children’s perspectives 

Notes

Acknowledgements

We would like to acknowledge the children and young people who have participated in our research projects. As well as sharing with us their stories and views about the topics we were researching, children and young people provided us with important insights into how to best work with them through the research project. We would also like to acknowledge our research partners and funders without whose shared commitment to research with children and young people we would not have had the resources to invest in projects that actively engage them.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Child Protection StudiesThe Australian Catholic UniversityDicksonAustralia

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