Doctor of Philosophy
Suárez, Juan L.
The present thesis aims to support child protection mechanisms in the context of armed conflict violence by working in two main directions. The first direction involves widening the opportunities for data collection and analytical approaches to better understand the impact of the Six Grave Violations (6GV) against children during warfare. The second direction engages in broadening the analysis of the 6GV to encompass what the thesis considers “the full cycle of armed conflict violence against children”, including warfare, peace negotiations, and post-conflict reconstruction (PCR). Despite multiple efforts from the Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism (MRM) of the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict (OSRSG-CAAC), researchers, peace and human rights activists, data on 6GV is currently disjointed, dispersed, scarce, or unavailable across the world. This thesis helps to tackle this problem by offering a methodology to support future data-driven child protection initiatives during the war, peace negotiations, and PCR stages, and it applies computational methods to extract valuable information from longitudinal, spatial, categorical, textual, and relational data on how children are affected by the 6GV. The first chapter explores the theoretical aspects of child protection in the full cycle of violence against children, examines current approaches' limitations, and presents a rationale for designing and implementing a methodology to support data-driven child protection initiatives. The second chapter explains the methodological and technological aspects of the model proposed. Chapter Three applies the model to analyze the intersection between grave violations and patterns of child deaths in Syria from 2011 to 2018. A second case study is presented in Chapter Four, which explores data patterns across peace agreements worldwide since 1990 to explain how provisions regarding the 6GV have been included in peace negotiations. Finally, Chapter Five concludes the thesis project by highlighting its main findings and considerations for future endeavours. In summary, the thesis proposes a data-driven approach to understanding the full cycle of armed conflict violence against children, making a significant contribution to data collection and analytical approaches to better protect children from grave violations during the war, peace processes, and PCR.
Summary for Lay Audience
The present thesis aims to improve the protection of children during armed conflicts. It focuses on two main goals: first, to find better ways of gathering and analyzing information about the Six Grave Violations (6GV) that children can face during wars, and second, to understand how armed conflict affects children throughout the entire cycle of violence, including war, peace negotiations, and PCR. Current data on how children have been affected by the full scope of war violence is limited, disjoint, dispersed across regions and periods, scarce, non-standardized, multi-sourced, or unavailable. The thesis proposes a data-driven model to support further child protection initiatives aiming to document serious violations of children’s rights and support better policy and decision-making by informing results of the analysis of data collected. The thesis discusses the theoretical aspects of child protection and the limitations and strengths of current approaches, particularly the Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism appointed by the UN General Assembly. It introduces the proposed model for using data and computational methods to support child protection initiatives and uses two case studies to evaluate the model proposed. The first case study analyzes the patterns of child deaths in Syria from 2011 to 2018 to better understand the impact of grave violations during the armed conflict in the country and how children have been exposed to unspeakable levels of violence. Finally, the thesis examines how peace agreements can help protect children during and after wars. Overall, the thesis proposes a data-driven approach to better understand how children are harmed during wars and how to protect them from such harm throughout the entire cycle of violence.
Lizama Mué, Yadira, "Model to Support Data-Driven Child Protection Efforts in the Full Cycle of Armed Conflict Violence against Children" (2023). Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository. 9660.
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