This book examines the ways in which analyses of child labour are influenced by existing socio-political power structures. This in turn shapes the way policy on child labour is made and influences its implementation on the ground in the form of development projects.
The research is divided into two sections - the first half traces the way that arguments on child labour are made and presented in Pakistan (and in Sialkot), examining in particular the interests, values and norms of groups responsible for directing the dialogue on child labour, namely, government departments, international development agencies, non-governmental organisations and national and international industry.
The second half of the study examines the gap between the neat rationality of development agencies- representations and theories and the actualities of social practices on the ground. This leads not only to those at the heart of the entire process of 'development' being marginalized but it also results in 'unintended consequences' that the marginalized groups have to adjust to. Ultimately, the question arises why the process of development so often marginalizes the people it is meant to benefit.
The book examines this central question through the example and analysis of child labour in the football manufacturing industry of Sialkot.