Enhancing Safeguarding in Efforts to Address Modern Slavery through the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals

This project will explore and assess what local safeguarding practice and methods are employed in Antislavery Knowledge Network (AKN) projects currently working to establish arts and humanities methods to develop community-based responses to modern slavery.

We aim to

  • Gain insights into safeguarding in anti-slavery work in Sub-Saharan Africa that can be utilised to create a safe and trusted environment for researchers, participants and communities, and to explore the potential for these to be used in other fields
  • Help research organisations and their partners think about their research, their participants, the communities they are working in, and how their work directly affects individuals and wider society.
  • Improve the ways in which policies that aim to provide protection and safety are understood and communicated in wider UK and African research communities (including those outside AKN), for example ensuring that incidents or reports of improper behaviour are appropriately acted upon.

Exploring Safeguarding Analysis Report (2019)

Power, Dignity and Voice: Enhancing safeguarding in efforts to address modern slavery

This report, written by the Safeguarding Research Fellows Linnea Renton and Leona Vaughn, focuses on the Antislavery Knowledge Network project Enhancing Safeguarding in Efforts to Address Modern Slavery through the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

This work explored and assessed local safeguarding practice and methods in existing AKN projects that are using arts and humanities methods to develop community-based responses to modern slavery. Through a range of creative approaches, AKN staff and partners have critiqued and expanded concepts of power, dignity and voice that are central to understandings of safeguarding within the context of research in the antislavery and anti- trafficking field.

See the full report here: Power, Dignity and Voice

Webinar: ‘Preventing Harm in Research’

Recording from live event 1 July

Linnea Renton, Research Fellow on Safegurding, University of Liverpool is just one of the panel on this webinar hosted by the UKCDR. Linnea has been conducting research with Leona Vaughn on safeguarding and preventing harm in research and published guidance on safeguarding in international development research earlier this year.

This webinar, targeted at the international development research community, aims to raise awareness of the new guidance increase understanding of the definition of safeguarding in the context of international development research and highlight how the research community can use it. We also reflect on safeguarding considerations in the context of COVID-19.

Making an Impact

Safeguarding in Research

How can stories and theatre help in exploring issues of risk, harm and support from the point of view of survivors of modern slavery? Nii Kwartelai Quartey of James Town Community Theatre in Accra, Ghana, talks about the use of arts-based approaches to "democratise and demystify" research in this area, and create ownership in defining safeguarding by those with direct lived experience. 


Guidance on Safeguarding in International Development Research

New guidance on safeguarding in international development research has been produced by our very own AKN Safeguarding team and partners.
This has been produced through a collaboration with researchers at University of Liverpool, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine and independent consultants and funded though the UK Collaborative on Development Research (UKCDR).
This guidance provides a set of principles and best practise on safeguarding which intends to anticipate, mitigate and address potential harms in the funding, design, delivery and dissemination of research. There is also a supplementary document which is a practical application of these principals during the COVID 19 pandemic.
This guidance is needed to ensure the highest safeguarding standards in the context of international development research, which presents specific situations in which harms that can occur are different to international development more broadly.




Science on the Frontline


Conflict zones and areas of hostility and instability are inherently dangerous and pose significant threat to life, which means conducting scientific research in these places can be challenging, if not impossible. Unfortunately, this means that there are large parts of the Earth that remain scarcely explored, and, as a result, a significant amount of potential scientific knowledge being left undiscovered or lost. 

Meet the experts working on the frontline in some of the world’s most hostile territories and discover the importance of exploring these places to learn more about the world we live in and the things that shape our planet and ourselves. 

This event was part of British Science Week 2020. 

Back to: Department of Politics