It has been shown that child participation can have positive results in the rescue, relief and rehabilitation phases of a disaster. Currently child participation is achieving increased attention as a component of disaster risk reduction (DRR). This paper examines the ongoing dialogues on child participation and reviews pertinent literature describing effective DRR outcomes within diverse contexts. A myriad of factors such as gender, age, socio-economic status, caste, religion and geographic location play a role in socialising children into particular ways of being. These factors are considered in light of the ways in which they may influence opportunities for children to participate in DRR and other activities in meaningful ways. The roles of adults in facilitating or preventing child participation, with particular regard to complex power structures and attitudes towards children's rights, are also discussed. Drawing out the potential implications of these factors calls for analyses of attitudes and possible restructuring of societal systems at several levels to enhance child participation. Planning for DRR may represent a crucial sequeway for challenging social norms and promoting equity, inclusion and participation - for children and other groups. This paper explores the role of child participation in DRR plans and practices, and identifies directions for developing an evidence base to support this potentially significant connection.