This book analyses the nature and experience of childhoods around the world at the beginning of the 21st century. Wide-ranging developments concerning children in the fields of social policy, sociology and politics have spurred significant growth in the social study of childhood. The book, which is primarily designed for students, academics and practitioners who need to keep up with fast-moving contemporary developments, considers childhood from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. It is centred around exciting contemporary research and informed theoretical discussion. Despite ranging widely, in terms of both geography and subject matter, the book integrates its discussion by focusing on major themes in the lives of children, such as work, education and participation in decision-making.