Professor Jo Boyden

Director, Young Lives

Jo BoydenJo Boyden has been Director of Young Lives since 2005. She has a PhD in Anthropology and a BSc in Social Anthropology from the University of London. Her research has mainly focused on child labour, children and political violence, and childhood poverty – particularly in bringing together academics, practitioners and policymakers to develop effective models and methods for supporting children, their families and their communities in situations of adversity. Before joining Young Lives, Jo was Senior Research Officer at the Refugee Studies Centre, University of Oxford. She has also worked for over 20 years as consultant on children’s issues to many governments and international and national organisations.

Jo is President of the British Association of International and Comparative Education (BAICE) for 2011-12.

Selected publications

Bourdillon, Michael and Boyden, M. (eds) (2014) Growing up in Poverty; Findings from Young Lives. Palgrave Studies on Children and Development. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan

Boyden, Jo and Zoe James (2014) 'Schooling, Childhood Poverty and Development: Choices and Challenges in a Longitudinal Study', Oxford Review of Education 40.1: 10-29 .

Boyden, Jo, Stefan Dercon and Abhijeet Singh (2014) 'Child Development in a Changing World: Risks and Opportunities', World Bank Research Observer early online publication 24 September 2014, doi: 10.1093/wbro/lku009.

Morrow, Virginia, and Jo Boyden (2014) 'Ethics of Researching Children's Well-Being', in Handbook of Child Well-Being: Theories, Methods and Policies in Global Perspective,  edited by Edited by Asher Ben-Arieh, Ferran Casas, Ivar Frønes and  Jill E. Korbin, pp. 2895-2918.

Crivello, Gina and Jo Boyden (2014) 'On Childhood and Risk: An Exploration of Children’s Everyday Experiences in Rural Peru', Children and Society 28.5: 380–391, DOI: 10.1111/j.1099-0860.2012.00465.x.

Boyden, Jo (2013) ‘“We’re Not Going to Suffer Like This in the Mud”: Educational Aspirations, Social Mobility and Independent Child Migration Among Populations Living in Poverty’, Compare 43(5): 580–600

Boyden, Jo, and Neil Howard (2013) 'Why Does Child Trafficking Policy Need to Be Reformed? The Moral Economy of children’s Movement in Benin and Ethiopia',
Children’s Geographies 11(3): 354-368 .

Boyden, Jo, and Michael Bourdillon (eds) (2012) Childhood Poverty: Multidisciplinary Approaches, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Boyden, Jo and Stefan Dercon (2012) Child Development and Economic Development: Lessons and Future Challenges, Oxford: Young Lives.

Boyden, Jo, Abby Hardgrove and Caroline Knowles (2012) 'Continuity and Change in Poor Children’s Lives: Evidence from Young Lives', in Global Child Poverty and Well-being: Measurement, Concepts, Policy and Action, edited by Alberto Minujin and Shailen Nandy, Bristol: Policy Press.

Boyden, Jo (2009) ‘Risk and Capability in the Context of Adversity: Children’s Contributions to Household Livelihoods in Ethiopia’, Children, Youth and Environments 19.2: 111–37.

Boyden, Jo and Elizabeth Cooper (2007) Are Children Up to the Task of Disrupting the Transmission of Poverty?, Working Paper 73, Manchester: Chronic Poverty Research Centre.

Boyden, Jo, and Gillian Mann (2006) 'Risk and Resilience in Children Affected by Armed Conflict and Forced Migration' in Michael Ungar (ed.) Pathways to Resilience, London: Sage Publications.

Boyden, Jo and de Berry, J. (eds) (2004) Children and youth on the front line: ethnography, armed conflict and displacement. Oxford and New York: Berghahn Books

Boyden Jo, C. Eyber, T. Feeny and C. Scott (2004) Child Poverty, Perspectives from Belarus, Bolivia, Sierra Leone, India and Kenya, Virginia, USA: Christian Children's Fund.

Boyden Jo, William Myers and Birgitta Ling (1998) What Works for Working Children?, Stockholm: Rädda Barnen

Boyden, Jo and Gibbs, S. (1997) Children of war; responses to psycho-social distress in Cambodia. Geneva: The United Nations Research Institute for Social Development.

Boyden, Jo and Ennew, J. (1997) Children in focus, a manual on child-centred participatory research. Stockholm: Rädda Barnen.





We need to end child poverty in order to break the cycle of poverty.