Speaking up: Young people’s participation in business decision-making

Business impacts children and young people in many ways but seldom do businesses directly engage with them on the issues that impact them the most. Children and young people have a right to participate in decisions that affect them. Yet, they are often relegated to the side-lines and excluded from having a say in decisions that will affect them.

Imagine how listening and learning from children could inform better business decision-making. Ethical product development. Safer and smarter services. Healthier communities.

Children’s views can inform how businesses work with their suppliers, how they structure their operations and how they develop their products and services. They are critical thinkers, change makers, communicators, innovators and future leaders. Shouldn’t we be listening?

This webinar offers an introduction for companies to the benefits of child participation in business decision-making and how to implement it meaningfully. Based on interest, this webinar will be the first in a series of webinars on child participation where we will continue to explore the topic together with companies.

On Thursday, October 31, at 15.00 – 16:00 CET/10.00 – 11:00 EST Global Child Forum will host a free webinar on how to address these issues.


We’ll cover:

  • Key concepts and guidelines for child participation for business
  • Potential avenues for children’s participation in business
  • Questions business should consider
  • Real-life examples of companies that have successfully integrated child participation in business

Following the Global Child Forum Pledge launched in 2018, calling companies to commit to working on children’s rights, including to Listen to Children, this webinar is part of a wider project to help companies to address these issues.

Click here to read the Briefing of Webinar I: Children’s participation in business decision-making

About the Speakers

Tara M. Collins

Associate Professor in the School of Child & Youth Care at Ryerson University in Canada

Tara M. Collins is Associate Professor in the School of Child & Youth Care at Ryerson University in Canada. She is also faculty with Ryerson’s graduate programs on Immigration & Settlement Studies, Early Childhood Studies, and Policy Studies. She is Honorary Associate Professor, Children’s Institute at the University of Cape Town. She has a Ph.D. from the University of London. Her professional experience includes work for: universities in Canada, South Africa, Brazil, and Ireland; Canadian federal government (Department of Foreign Affairs and CIDA) and Parliament; and a non-governmental organization. Research interests include child and youth participation, protection, play, business, and rights-based approaches. For more details, see https://www.ryerson.ca/cyc/people/faculty/tara-collins/

Kay Tisdall

Professor of Childhood Policy, MHSES University of Edinburgh

Kay Tisdall is Professor of Childhood Policy, MHSES University of Edinburgh. She is part of the Childhood & Youth Studies Research Group, with a background in law and the social sciences. She has policy and academic interests in promoting children and young people’s participation rights, working across such fields as sports, data citizenship, family law and education on this topic. In collaboration with children, young people and adults, she has undertaken this work within the UK and with cross-national partners in such countries as Brazil, Canada, Columbia, India and South Africa. For more information, please see https://www.ed.ac.uk/profile/kay-tisdall

Julia Olofsson

Global Human and Child Rights Manager, Ingka Group

Julia Olofsson is the Global Human and Child Rights Manager at Ingka Group (Ingka Group is a strategic partner in the IKEA franchise system, operating IKEA Retail in 30 countries) where she leads the work on integrating the Children’s Rights and Business Principles across the company. Julia started her IKEA career in the global sustainability team and has during the years held different roles such as senior advisor on sustainability and public affairs as well as project manager for decent work in supply chains. Julia has also worked as a senior child rights and business officer at UNICEF Sweden supporting companies with respecting children’s rights in their operations.

Magnus Thuvesson

Insight Leader, Children’s IKEA

Magnus Thuvesson is Insight Leader  in Children’s IKEA (the department where IKEA develops all children’s products) and responsible for all activities where the company involves children in their product development process. Over the last three years, Magnus has worked on building a Competence Centre containing knowledge from experts and children with the aim of “creating a better everyday life for the most important people in the world”. This project frequently involves interacting with children through the Kids Lab or the Kids Panel.

Nina Vollmer 

Research Manager, Global Child Forum

Nina Vollmer is the Research Manager at Global Child Forum. Nina’s main area of responsibility is to lead and develop the work on the Corporate Benchmark Studies on children’s rights that Global Child Forum produces in collaboration with Boston Consulting Group. In addition to this work, she also takes on other research projects and works on developing the content/inviting speakers for Forums and events. She has previously worked at the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation, the Swedish Teacher’s Union, the Swedish Fellowship of Reconciliation – SweFOR in Colombia and SonyEricsson. She has also held the voluntary position of group secretary for Amnesty Business Group Sweden and been a member of the Board of Directors at Amnesty Sweden. She has a Master’s Degree in Political Science with a focus on human rights and development from Lund University in Sweden. Nina joined Global Child Forum in 2015.

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Reserve your spot! Register today!

To register for the event, please click here.

Interested in learning more?  Please contact Rebecca Forsman at rebecca.forsman@globalchildforum.org.

If you are unable to attend the webinar, but would like to receive information about the topics covered in a summary email, click on the link above to register your interest.

“Businesses has an important role to play to improve children’s lives. Big business should not threaten small businesses, as this makes it difficult for our parents and family members to earn a good living. Big business should find ways to support small businesses and skill training for parents and youth from poor families so that our basic needs can be met and we can fulfill our dreams.”

— Ruth Kesia and Fauza Ananda, youth workers and member of the Indonesian Children’s Advisory Committee, speaking at the Global Child Forum 2018