Children’s Rights Between Normative and Empirical Realms

  • Karl HansonEmail author
  • Michele Poretti
  • Frédéric Darbellay
Part of the Children’s Well-Being: Indicators and Research book series (CHIR, volume 8)


The capability approach and international children’s rights share a normative ambition as they both aim to evaluate the degree of respect for a person’s dignity and well-being, and also to prescribe sets of particular social arrangements and policies in order to enhance the said respect. We discuss distinctions and overlaps between these normative ambitions with empirical concerns in the study of childhood and children’s rights. In order to do so, we situate recent developments and critical enquiries in children’s rights studies, and look at links between rights, emancipation and interdisciplinarity. After an examination of discussions on child participation, we present the notions of living rights and translations, two theoretical underpinnings that were developed in an interdisciplinary research project on priorities in international children’s rights advocacy which lies as a background for this chapter. Using some examples from recent children’s rights research, we further explore the links between our insights obtained from children’s rights research with the capability approach.


Social Practice Child Labour Armed Conflict Capability Approach Street Child 
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

  • Karl Hanson
    • 1
    Email author
  • Michele Poretti
    • 2
  • Frédéric Darbellay
    • 2
  1. 1.Children’s Rights UnitUniversity Institute Kurt BöschSionSwitzerland
  2. 2.University Institute Kurt BöschSionSwitzerland

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