Cooperation with SOS-Kinderdorf International und SOS- Kinderdorf e.V.

Capabilities: The project – Approaching Capabilities with Children in Care

SOS_Kinderdorf_International_NEG_DeutschBy concentrating on the achievement of a flourishing life that people have reason to choose and value, the capability approach might be a promising framework for the assessment of child, youth and family related services. Nevertheless it has not yet been applied to the work with children and youth in care. This project focuses on the question whether and to which extent the capability approach can be used as a framework for assessing and optimising youth and family related services in different cultural contexts.

The capability approach, especially the way Amartya Sen developed it, is primarily “ a broad normative framework for the evaluation of individual well-being and social arrangements, the design of policies and proposals about social change in society”, which “is used in a wide range of fields, most prominently in development thinking, welfare economics, social policy and political philosophy”. Clark confirms that by calling the Capability Approach “the leading alternative to standard economic frameworks for thinking about poverty, inequality and human development generally”.

Two field studies will be conducted in two different countries (Nicaragua and Namibia). Young people living inside and outside facilities run by SOS will be interviewed upon their values and the life, which they would like to lead later on. How do they assess their chances to realise their plans? What kind of support they already receive and what kind of (additional) support they need to achieve their goals?

The research project is conducted by SOS-Kinderdorf e. V., SOS-Kinderdorf International and ifz.

Download fullversion: research plan

Paper_September 2009