Reaching The Last Child - Evidence from Young Lives India

Renu Singh
Country report
Country Report

This summative country report draws upon fifteen years of evidence captured by the Young Lives study in India. It provides an overview and synthesis of a much more detailed evidence base, much of which can be found on the project website. Some new analysis has been completed for this report to bring it right up to date. Many of the findings are drawn from journal articles and working papers which have been subject to separate review processes.  


Young Lives ran parallel to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and utilised mixed methods consisting of surveys, in-depth interviews and focus groups to improve understanding of the causes and consequences of childhood poverty, and to examine how policies affect children’s well-being. Drawing upon significant information gathered about children’s experiences as they transition from early childhood to adolescence and early adulthood, this report attempts to capture and highlight key findings from various papers, policy briefs and journal articles written over the period since 2002. 


The research has been guided by three intersecting lines of enquiry: (1) an analysis of the factors shaping children’s growth and development over the course of their lives; (2) development of the understanding that risk and deprivation are concentrated in particular social groups and localities, with dramatic disparities in children’s outcomes, leading to questions about what these inequalities mean for children; (3) an examination of the changing influences in children’s lives, including the risks to which they are exposed and the support they enjoy. This has been achieved specifically by comparisons between the two cohorts of children that the Young Lives project followed, and more generally by linking data on the children and the households they live in to the political-economic, socio-cultural and institutional context.