1 60% or over
2 40% to 59%
3 20% to 39%
4 10% - 19%
5 less than 10%
6 No Data
0 Less than 25
1 25 to 49
2 50 to 74
3 75 to 99
4 100 to 149
5 150 and over
6 No Data

Married Too Soon

What does it mean ?

Child marriage (also known as early marriage) is defined as a formal marriage or informal union before age 18. It is measured as the percentage of women who are in a marriage / union before the age of 18 years. It is often presented specifically for women currently aged 20-24 years only in order to give an indication of recent prevalence.

Why does it matter ?

As well as being a violation of a girl or young woman's human rights, early or child marriage is associated with curtailment of education, psychosocial disadvantage, poor reproductive health, increased risk of intimate partner violence and poor child health outcomes for the subsequent generation. The elimination of early and child marriage is a target for Sustainable Development Goal 5: toachieve gender equality and empower all women and girls. Target 5.3: "by 2030 to eliminate all harmful practices, such as early, forced and child marriage, and female genital mutilation."

How is it collected ?

In high and some middle income countries estimates are based on vital registration data. However, most estimates are based on self-reported, retrospective data from large scale, nationally representative surveys such as Demographic and Health (DHS) or Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys (MICS). It must be noted that these surveys adopt a broad definition of marriage / union which includes legal and "traditional" marriages, as well as consensual unions with cohabitation.

UNICEF datasets most recent available data http://data.unicef.org/child-protection/child-marriage.html
Accessed 15th August 2016

Adolescent Birth Rate

What does it mean ?

This indicator represents the number of babies born to girls and women aged 15-19 each year. It can be understood as the expected number of girls that will become pregnant between the ages of 15-19 each year out of 1,000 girls in that age group.

Why does it matter ?

In countries where child marriage is common, it is also likely that a high adolescent fertility rate will result. The marriage of girls followed by multiple childbearing either in early or late teen years is a violation of human and reproductive rights, as well as a missed opportunity to improve levels of female literacy, education and the economic progress that is associated with female participation in the labour force.

How is it collected ?

A national survey was undertaken in each country from a representative sample of households where women and girls were asked how many children they have given birth to and when they occurred. Using data from girls aged 15-19, a fertility rate was calculated by adding the number of births within the year before the survey, and dividing by the number of girls in the survey aged 15-19.

World Population Prospects: The 2015 Revision https://esa.un.org/unpd/wpp/Download/Standard/Fertility/