Observing Children’s Capabilities as Agency

  • Claudio BaraldiEmail author
  • Vittorio Iervese
Part of the Children’s Well-Being: Indicators and Research book series (CHIR, volume 8)


This chapter explores some conditions in which children’s resources can be transformed in capabilities (choosing) and therefore functionings (acting), and children’s rights to participation in society can be promoted. The Capability Approach asserts that children’s ability to convert resources and commodities into capabilities and functionings depends on conversion processes and factors. We will highlight how the concepts of conversion processes and factors can be analysed in the perspective of Conversation Analysis and Social Systems Theory. We will provide theoretical and empirical evidence that important conversion processes and factors can be produced in adult-children interactions, as communication systems promoting children’s rights to participate in decision making, i.e. children’s rights to agency. In particular, we will analyse the facilitation of children’s agency in the interaction as a potential social conversion process. We will examine data on interactions in educational settings, showing in which ways different forms of facilitation promote opportunities for children’s agency. Finally, we will discuss the features of different forms of facilitation as possible social conversion factors promoting children’s rights to participate in decision making.


Epistemic Status Capability Approach Classroom Interaction Personal Position Conversation Analysis 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Studies on Language and CultureUniversity of Modena and Reggio EmiliaModenaItaly

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