Global Child Forum’s Business Academy mobilizes business to integrate children’s rights


The Children’s Rights and Business Workbook, which Lindéngruppen helped to develop last year, is now providing the foundation for Global Child Forum’s new Academy that aims to inspire large companies to adopt a proactive approach to children’s rights.

Photo: Global Child Forum

Building momentum among businesses on children’s rights

The Children’s Rights and Business Workbook, developed in close cooperation between Global Child Forum, Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and Lindéngruppen, aims to guide businesses on how to implement a children’s rights perspective in business decision-making.

“The workbook is a great tool to help companies understand and integrate a children’s rights perspective into their business,” says Cajsa Wiking, Secretary General at Global Child Forum. “But we realised we needed a vehicle to really drive the workbook and build momentum in different industries – and our new Business Academy is designed to do just that.”

A children’s rights and business accelerator

Global Child Forum created the Business Academy, which will be rolled out one sector at a time, to help companies reach their sustainability targets by focusing on their children’s rights impacts. The first sector will be the technology and telecommunications sector.

“In 2021, we focused on the technology and telecom sector as various challenges and opportunities, related to children’s rights, have emerged in this sector during the pandemic,” says Wiking. “The aim of the academy is to engage and inspire companies to tackle pressing issues related to children’s rights in their sector, promote collaboration and provide opportunities to share best practice around common challenges.”  

During the autumn and winter of 2021, 10 technology and telecom companies, including Samsung, Vodafone and Uber, participated in the academy and its seven separate online sessions. The companies also worked on assignments related to the development of their own organisation and how they work with children’s rights topics. The workbook served as the curriculum for the academy and included three main topics:

  • Post-Covid World and Social Impact
  • Technology Development & Child Safeguarding
  • Climate & Environmental Impact

For many of the participating companies, the academy is the start of their new focused approach to children’s rights as they develop and implement their action plans.

“The academy for the technology and telecom sector has been a great success so far with the companies highly engaged and many of them starting to initiate meaningful change in their organisations,” says Wiking. “We look forward to continuing to work with our technology and telecom sector network in the long-term and hope they continue to network with each other.”

Scaling up global impact

The academy has huge potential to scale up as it encourages more and more companies and sectors to engage with the workbook in the coming years. The next focus for the academy is the food and beverage sector.

“Lindéngruppen is passionate about inspiring other companies to work with children’s rights issues, and the academy is a fantastic way of engaging multinational companies with a huge, combined impact on a global level,” says Jenny Johansson, Chief Communication and Sustainability Officer at Lindéngruppen. “We also want the workbook we helped to develop to be freely available to everyone and the academy’s sector-by-sector approach really helps to promote it to specific sectors – including companies not directly involved in the academy.”