Her Choice seeks to examine the impact of the six Her Choice strategies on preventing and reducing the prevalence of child marriage in the different programme countries. A key goal of research conducted in the framework of the Her Choice programme is to determine which (combination of) strategies seems to be effective, and why. The Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR) at the University of Amsterdam (UvA) is the research partner of the Her Choice programme. The Her Choice research team is composed of three senior researchers (Dr. Winny Koster, Dr. Esther Miedema and Dr. Nicky Pouw), two junior researchers (Albena Sotirova and Philippe Meyer), two PhD candidates (Rashmila Shakya and Nashia Ajaz), and numerous UvA MSc and Research Master students. The research team is embedded in the AISSR’s research programme ‘Governance and Inclusive Development’.

The research team has conducted a mixed methods and multi-level baseline study in all project countries in 2016, recently completed the midline study (January 2019), and will undertake the endline study in 2020. To best attribute change to programme interventions, the research uses a difference-in-difference design, drawing comparisons between ‘treatment’ and ‘comparison’ sites across different points in time (base-, mid- and end-line). For ethical reasons, rather than ‘pure’ control sites (where no intervention would take place), comparison sites were selected – that is, sites that were included in the programme but at a later stage than treatment sites. More detail on methodology can be found in the baseline study report. In addition to the impact evaluation, the AISSR team is carrying out in-depth qualitative research, including two doctoral studies (in Nepal and Pakistan), and MSc and Research MSc studies. An overview of the publications of our research team can be found below.

Her Choice Impact Evaluation

2021 – This impact evaluation highlights the work of all partners and stakeholders who dedicated themselves to ending child marriage in almost a thousand communities, and who trained just under 300,000 girls. The study shows that the number of child marriages in the Her Choice working areas in most programme countries has declined impressively over the past five years.

VCA Manual

2021 – One of the key components of the strategy of Her Choice alliance member The Hunger Project is the VCA methodology: Vision, Commitment and Action. It is a process to facilitate a mind shift in people to take their destiny in their own hands. From an attitude of helplessness and dependency towards one of ‘yes we can’ and self-reliance. We share the VCA methodology in the VCA manual – for all organisations who equally aim to strengthen the capacity and voice of local communities to take the lead in their own development.

Annual Report 2019

2020 – This Annual Progress Report shows that the joint efforts of local implementing partners and (Netherlands based) alliance members of the Her Choice Alliance are leading to promising results. Activities have been carried out as scheduled, young people, teachers, traditional leaders and many other stakeholders have been equipped to carry out decisive steps to obtain sustainable impact of the Her Choice programme by the end of 2020.

Annual Report 2018

2019 – The recent Midline Evaluation Report shows that, halfway through the programme, our joint efforts have already led to tangible results on the targets set for most indicators. This Annual Report for 2018 reflects this progress too, despite many challenges.

Midline Study - Synthesis Report

2018 – This report presents the findings of the Her Choice midline study. Her Choice is one of three Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights alliances working in partnership with the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the issue of child marriage.

Research Thesis: Engaging boys and male youth in building child marriage free communities in Ethiopia – by Marieke Pijnenburg, University of Amsterdam.

2019 – Influences on gender equal perceptions and practices of intimate/ marital relationships

Annual Report 2017

2018 – This report provides an overview of what happened within the Her Choice programme in 2017. The Her Choice team is excited to see encouraging examples of the programme’s holistic multi-strategy approach starting to pay off. An approach that involves not only girls, boys, teachers and leaders, but everyone in the community.