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Research Highlight Series

137: In the Digital Home How Do Parents Support their Children and Who Supports Them? Parenting for a Digital Future: Survey Report 1

Sonia Livingstone, Alicia Blum-Ross and colleagues (London School of Economics and Political Science) (February, 2019)

A summary of the key results from a study exploring parents’ values, skills and attitudes towards digital media use in their own lives, and how these influence their expectations for, and management of, digital media and dilemmas in the lives of their children. It also considered how policymakers might better reach parents with guidance on digital matters. A nationally representative survey was carried out of 2,032 parents of children aged 0-17. Participants were recruited via an online panel, supplemented with a sample of low or non-internet users interviewed in-person. Participants were representative by region across the UK, representative by ethnic background, socio-economic status (SES), gender, and inclusion of parents with low or no internet use. The data were collected in 2017. 

136: The Trouble with “Screen Time” Rules

Alicia Blum-Ross and Sonia Livingstone (London School of Economics and Political Science) (February, 2019)

An overview of the results of a qualitative study examining and critiquing the widely influential American Academy of Pediatrics’ (AAP) “screen time” guidelines (issued in 1999 and updated in 2016) through an exploration of whether the screen time rules and guidelines match up with reports of parents’ on-the-ground practices. Face-to-face interviews were carried out with 73 families in London, UK. The research balanced a purposive sample of parents for whom the digital offered something distinctive with others whom we recruited as a cross-section of families by age of child (from birth to 17), ethnicity and socio-economic status.

135: Imagining the Future Through the Lens of the Digital: Parents’ Narratives of Generational Change

Sonia Livingstone and Alicia Blum-Ross (London School of Economics and Political Science) (February, 2019)

This study explored parents’ “digital imaginaries” (Mansell, 2012), seeking to understand how and why parents narrate for themselves and their children what it means to live in a “digital age” — in the present and in an anticipated “digital future.” It also considered how digital media are being used to tell such narratives, and what strategies and resources parents use in order to shape the present so as to optimise their child’s future. The study interviewed 73 families in London with dependent children in 2015 and 2016 who were diverse in socioeconomic status, ethnicity, and age of child(ren). It also involved parents of children with special needs who hope the digital will provide a much needed work-around to socioeconomic inclusion and a viable future. 

134: Rules of Engagement: Family Rules on Young Children’s Access to and Use of Technologies

Stephane Chaudron (European Commission) and colleagues (February, 2019)

A summary of the results of a project examining young children’s access to and use of digital technologies, as well as how parents mediated this use. The project involved seven countries: Belgium, Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Italy, Russia and the United Kingdom. In each country, interviews and observations were undertaken with ten families in their homes, each with a child aged between 6 and 7. Families had at least one child who used a digital technology at least once a week. Each national sample was constituted to provide variety in the use of digital technology and family structures. Data were analysed using a thematic approach based on grounded theory in that an inductive approach was employed.

133: Research for Culture and Education Committee (CULT) - Child Safety Online: Definition of the Problem

Brian O’Neill (Dublin Institute of Technology) (February, 2019)

An overview of the key findings from a briefing paper produced for the European Parliament’s CULT Committee which aimed to inform the process of implementing policies and initiatives to protect children and to identify crimes faced by children online, and document developments in information technology. It was based on the results of the EU Kids Online survey of 25,000 European 9- to 16-year-old internet users and their parents in 25 countries undertaken in 2010 (Livingstone et al., 2011), as well as the 2014 Net Children Go Mobile project - a similar survey focusing on mobile devices, with 3,500 European 9- to 16-year-old Internet users in 7 countries (Mascheroni & Cuman 2014).