The CRB is designed to encourage regional cooperation, stimulate more robust implementation of the UNCRC, and serve as a policy analysis tool for civil society, governments and donors. It consists of 861 main indicators that together measure a state’s policy and actions to protect and care for girls and boys under their jurisdiction. The CRB framework of indicators heavily relies on the Implementation Handbook for the Convention on the Rights of the Child, published by UNICEF. The Handbook provides a series of yes, no and partially-implemented checklists to create an understanding of each UNCRC article’s significance. The CRB uses these checklists as core indicators to measure state performance.
The framework includes a series of 861 main indicators that together measure a state’s policy and actions towards greater child protection. The indicators are drawn from four sources.
The first set of indicators comes from Article 4 of the UNCRC. This Article requires that states apply all appropriate measures within the toolbox of government action to achieve child protection. The CRB refers to this category as “the governance environment” for child protection. An example of the governance environment indicator is: has a consolidated law on the rights of the child and child protection been adopted?
The second set of indicators is based on Article 2 of the UNCRC. This Article requires that states respect and ensure the rights set forth in the Convention to each child within their jurisdiction without discrimination of any kind, and take all appropriate measures to ensure this requirement.
The third set of indicators comes from Article 7 of the UNCRC. This Article requires that children are registered immediately after birth and shall have the right from birth to a name, the right to acquire a nationality and, as far as possible, the right to know and be cared for by their parents. Article 7 requires all State Parties to ensure the implementation of these rights. Birth registration is considered to be a fundamental child protection right.
The fourth set of indicators uses specific child protection articles from the UNCRC and principles from the systems approach to child protection as the common foundation and matrix for its qualitative indicators. To unpack each Article’s requirements, the CRB framework relies on the Implementation Handbook for the Convention on the Rights of the Child published by UNICEF. The Handbook offers analysis on each UNCRC Article from the Committee on the Rights of the Child’s Concluding Observations in over 300 different opinions.3 The Handbook provides a series of “yes”, “no” and “partially-implemented” checklists to create an understanding of each Article’s significance. The CRB uses these checklists as core indicators for the framework. The qualitative indicators are “yes”, “no” and “partially-implemented” questions that measure a state’s (i) Policy/ legal and regulatory framework; (ii) Services, processes, mechanisms; (iii) Capacity; (iv) Accountability; and (v) Coordination and cooperation in relation to the UNCRC articles on child protection. These key elements are necessary to achieve a functional child protection system.4 UNCRC articles chosen are those associated with every child’s right not to be subjected to harm and a state’s duty to protect and care for children vulnerable to harm.
The data collection teams include multiple child protection experts per country. A training workshop led by the Barometer Data Manager provided training to the team prior to collection. In the first stage of collection, groups of two experts collected data independently on one of four sections of indicators (using reports, studies, articles, statistics data, etc.) to validate a “yes”, “no” and “partially-implemented” responses to each Barometer indicator. In this way, two experts reviewed the same indicator separately. Where such evidence-based information was not available, interviews with relevant stakeholders and information based on the personal experience of professionals with relevant expertise in that particular field were taken into account.
After the completion of individual review and validation, responses provided for the same indicator by two different experts were considered and compared side-by-side by the Barometer Data Manager. Responses found to be inconsistent between the two experts or that lacked sufficient validation required further review and evidence gathering. The two experts assigned to the same indicator again in group work reviewed and discussed the evidence and sought additional information when needed. Joint answers provided by each sub-team were further reviewed by the Barometer Data Manager. Three to four reviews over a total period of 3 to 4 months were required for the entire review process, in order to reach final agreements on each indicator considered.
A final cross-check of information provided under the various sections of the Barometer framework was performed by the Barometer Data Manager before finally validating the National Barometer, with the support of the National Coordinator and the team of experts.
Each qualitative indicator required a “yes,” “no,” or “partially-implemented” answer. To score the results, “yes” = 1, “no” = 0, and “partially-implemented” = 0,5. In situations where several sub-indicators contributed to one main indicator, the final main indicator score is calculated as an average of the scores of its sub-indicators (e.g. 1+0,5+0+1+0,5 = 3 : 5 = 0,6).
An average score was calculated for three of the four sources of indicators, 1) Governance Environment, 2) Birth Registration, and 3) Non-discrimination. In the case of the main source (UNCRC Articles analysed with the Child Protection Systems Approach), each UNCRC article and its indicators is scored separately (to create one average score per article). The final (overall) CRB score is calculated as an average of all the main indicators included under all the components of the CRB framework; this way, each main indicator is equally contributing to the final (overall) CRB score.