Observatory on Human Rights of Children Advocacy Competition 2024

The Observatory on Human Rights of Children has become the Observatory on Human Rights and Social Justice (and has expanded its activities beyond children’s rights). Our work on children’s rights will continue, including our Children's Legal Centre Wales.

This policy advocacy competition will continue and the announcement of the winner will be made during our Annual Children’s Rights Lecture.

We are delighted to announce a prestigious new competition for teams of undergraduate and postgraduate students interested in children’s human rights, law and policy.

The Observatory on Human Rights of Children Policy Advocacy Competition 2024 is introduced with support from the UK Committee for UNICEF (UNICEF UK).

About the Competition

Policy advocacy to progress children’s rights under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child is key to improving the lives of children.

This Policy Advocacy Competition (supported by UNICEF-UK) is an opportunity for teams of students to research a policy issue, prepare a briefing for a (fictional) Government Minister and to act as advocates for children’s rights.

The Task

Teams will be asked to prepare a written Policy Briefing for presentation to a Children’s Minister in a fictional State jurisdiction.

Teams will represent the position of a Children’s Commissioner to argue the case for removing the defence of ‘justifiable punishment’ which is available to parents and carers with responsibility for a child as a defence to a charge of assault in the fictional State.  

Written briefings will be assessed and eight teams will be invited to make online oral presentation to a panel of expert judges.


The School of Law at Swansea University invites teams made up of students who are enrolled on a Bachelors or Masters programme of study on 30th April 2024 to participate in the competition.

There is no entry or administration fee for this competition.


Registration for this competition is now open. To enter you must register on or before 5pm (UK time) on 28th June 2024.

Instructions on how to register are available under Rules 17 and 18 of the 'Competition Rules'. You can access these rules by following the link below.

Further information about the competition, entry and rules

Timeline Summary

  • January 2024, full brief, entry instructions, ranking criteria and competition rules will be available online.
  • 1st February 2024, registration opens.
  • 28th June 2024, registration closes.
  • 28th June 2024, last date for submitting written advice.
  • 31st July 2024, top eight ranked teams announced and invited to give a live oral presentation.
  • September 2024, live oral presentations (winning team notified to all teams).
  • November 2024, winning team announced at annual lecture.
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