This resource is from the Journal of Development Studies, 2019, Vol. 55, No. 3, 366–383.
Having a birth certificate is a stepping stone to acquiring an array of rights and benefits, including other documents necessary to navigate in and outside of one’s home country. Despite a birth certificate’s importance, many children in the developing world never obtain one. Whether a person does so or not often depends on ethnicity, race, gender, and age. With the rights of individuals as well as groups in mind, this article examines some of the crucial causes and consequences of not acquiring this key document. It concludes that legal empowerment matters. It also underscores what governments can do, if political will exists, to facilitate the process of birth registration and certification among citizens.
Be part of the movement for legal empowerment.
Meet practitioners from around the world, access practical resources, and join learning exchanges.Sign Up