Academic journal article Bulletin of the World Health Organization

Global Research Priorities for Interpersonal Violence Prevention: A Modified Delphi study/Priorites Mondiales De Recherche Pour la Prevention De la Violence Interpersonnelle: Une Etude Delphi modifiee/Prioridades De Investigacion Globales Para la Prevencion De la Violencia Interpersonal: Un Estudio De Delphi Modificado

Academic journal article Bulletin of the World Health Organization

Global Research Priorities for Interpersonal Violence Prevention: A Modified Delphi study/Priorites Mondiales De Recherche Pour la Prevention De la Violence Interpersonnelle: Une Etude Delphi modifiee/Prioridades De Investigacion Globales Para la Prevencion De la Violencia Interpersonal: Un Estudio De Delphi Modificado

Article excerpt

Introduction

Almost half a million people are victims of homicide every year (1) and one in three women has experienced violence from an intimate partner at some point during her life. (2) Furthermore, a quarter of adults report having been physically abused in childhood and one in five women and one in 13 men report having been sexually abused in childhood. (3,4) Interpersonal violence during childhood can have serious, lifelong consequences that affect mental and physical health, academic and job performance and social functioning. (5,6) In addition, interpersonal violence, which includes child maltreatment, intimate partner violence, youth violence, armed violence, sexual violence and elder abuse (Box 1), create an economic burden on society. (7)

Over the last two decades, the prevention of interpersonal violence has risen on the international public health agenda. (8) In May 2016, the World Health Organization (WHO) adopted a global plan of action to strengthen the role of health systems in addressing interpersonal violence, particularly against women and girls and against children. The 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) recently adopted by the United Nations include four targets on interpersonal violence: (i) to eliminate all forms of violence against women and girls (target 5.2); (ii) to eliminate all harmful practices against women and girls (target 5.3); (iii) to reduce significantly all forms of-violence and related deaths everywhere (target 16.1); and (iv) to end abuse, exploitation, trafficking and all forms of violence against children (target 16.2). (9)

In spite of progress in the past 20 years, major gaps in violence prevention remain. The Global status report on violence prevention (1) reveals that civil and vital registration data on homicide are lacking in 40% of countries. Moreover, fewer than half of all countries have reported conducting population-based surveys on most forms of nonfatal violence, such as child maltreatment, youth violence and elder abuse. (1) Only 9.3% of all outcome evaluation studies in violence prevention have been conducted in low--and middle income countries and there is no indication that this is increasing, despite over 85% of violent deaths occurring in these countries. (10)

Research has a major role to play in reducing the global burden of interpersonal violence, by: (i) clearly defining the magnitude and distribution of violence; (ii) identifying risk and protective factors; (iii) developing effective interventions that target these factors to prevent and respond to violence; and (iv) increasing understanding of the legislative and policy environment and the human, institutional and financial resources required to scale up effective interventions. However, current research remains under-resourced relative to the burden of the problem, it is fragmented and disproportionately focused on high-income countries.

Box 1 Main types of violence, survey of global research priorities
for violence prevention, 2010-2013
Child maltreatment

The abuse or neglect of a child younger than 18 years. It includes
all types of physical and emotional ill treatment, sexual abuse,
neglect, negligence and commercial or other exploitation that
result In actual or potential harm to the child's health, survival,
development or dignity in the context of a relationship of
responsibility, trust or power. Exposure to Intimate partner
violence is sometimes included as a form of child maltreatment.

Intimate partner violence

Behaviour by an intimate partner or ex-partner that causes
physical, sexual or psychological harm. It includes physical
aggression, sexual coercion, psychological abuse and controlling
behaviours.

Youth violence

Violence occurring between people aged 10 to 29 years of age. It
includes all types of physical and emotional III treatment and
generally takes place outside of the home. It also includes harmful
behaviours that may start early and continue into adulthood. … 
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