Tuesday, 24 August 2021

NSPCC: Climate change and child safeguarding

Project Summary

Develop a model or map of the future potential impact of climate change on child abuse and neglect; and as far as evidence allows, populate it to assess possible future risk level. 

Project Description

The NSPCC’s aim is to prevent child abuse. It would like to understand the increased risks to children as a result of climate change, looking particularly at the next 10 years or so in the UK. 

The work is expected to involve:

  • Meetings/workshops with NSPCC staff and review of the literature, to gain an understanding of the known or suspected linkages between the climate crisis and risks of child and adolescent abuse, neglect and exploitation, from within or outside families (including also the impact of climate change on key risk drivers and mitigants, such as parental stressors and services’ ability to effectively safeguard children and adolescents);
  • Producing a model bringing this evidence together – potentially in the form of an influence or causal loop diagram, system dynamics model, or other mapping or mathematical model showing impact over time. The extent to which the model can be quantified, or populated, will depend on the nature and extent of evidence;
  • Providing an explanatory report (including documentation if need be) of any model or map/diagram produced.

It is expected that the work will be iterative, with an initial relatively simple high-level model/diagram based on ‘quick-and-dirty’ collection of information, through working with NSPCC staff and a short trawl of the literature; followed by more thorough exploration and detailed modelling if there is sufficient volunteer time.

Skills needed include: elicitation of expert views (experience of facilitating online workshops will be particularly helpful); model-building (causal loop/influence diagramming and system dynamics capability are likely to be useful, but other approaches may also work well); literature review.  Prior knowledge of risk factors around child and adolescent abuse/neglect and criminal exploitation would be extremely useful, but is not required.  Knowledge of climate change research may also be helpful.

This project is particularly suited to a number of volunteers working together so if you are interested but only have some of the required skills, please get in touch.

Location: All the work can be done remotely.

Commitment: This is flexible, depending on the availability and the number of volunteers (as noted above, the project would be particularly suited to a group of volunteers).  The minimum time requirement is 5 person-days: to (i) provide a first iteration of a high-level model or diagram, based on one workshop with NSPCC staff and a rapid review of a small number of literature sources; (ii) undertake a quick assessment of the conclusions supported by the model (if any); and (iii) hold a follow-up discussion and handover meeting. More, up to 20-30 person days, would enable a more thorough trawl of the literature, more sophisticated modelling with more thorough validation, more exploration of insights provided by the modelling, and provision of a written report and any necessary documentation. In any case, the specific time commitment and deliverables will be agreed between the volunteer(s) and NSPCC as part of the Terms of Reference.

Desired project start date: October 2021

Desired project completion date: December 2021

If you feel you are able to offer your assistance please complete the application form and return along with your CV to ProBonoOR@theorsociety.com by Wednesday 29 September 2021.

The OR Society fully supports equal opportunities. As such, we welcome applications from the partially sighted or blind, or those with disabilities.

Information about the organisation: 

The NSPCC is the UK's leading children’s charity. They’ve been looking out for children for over 130 years. From campaigns to services - they strive to make a difference in everything they do. 

For further information about the NSPCC please visit www.nspcc.org.uk

For further information about the Pro Bono OR scheme, please visit: www.theorsociety.com/Probono  or email ProBonoOR@theorsociety.com

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