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Awarded Research Grant to Prevent Violence and Violence-Related Injury

Development of Partner Violence Perpetration Among Men

FOA Number: CE04-045 - Grants for Violence-Related Injury Prevention Research
Project Period: 8/01/04–7/31/07
Application/Grant Number: 1-R49-CE000447-01
Principal Investigator: Jay Silverman, PhD
Harvard School of Public Health
1552 Tremont Street
Boston, MA 02120
Phone: 617-432-0081
Fax: 617-495-8543


Data on the risk and protective factors that contribute to the development of intimate partner violence (IPV) perpetration among adult males is woefully lacking. The few previous studies in this area have failed to include major social contexts for IPV, have typically included a very narrow range of factors within these ecologic strata, and have failed to examine protective factors. Identifying protective factors is considered especially critical to constructing effective prevention programming.

This project uses a mixed-methods retrospective cohort study of men ages 18 to 35 (age group found to perpetrate IPV at the highest rates; N=4,000) attending eight community health centers within racially/ethically diverse neighborhoods in the Boston area to assess risk and protective factors for perpetration of IPV. Quantitative survey data will be collected regarding developmental pathways and social contexts (including individual, family, peer, and community levels) hypothesized to relate to IPV perpetration. Additionally, qualitative data will be collected from in-depth interviews with men (n=80) participating in quantitative surveys selected for both perpetration and non-perpetration of IPV, but reporting similar risk profiles, to elucidate protective factors/mechanisms and provide context/meaning for quantitative data.

The researcher will also use this mixed data set to assess interrelations of IPV perpetration and perpetration of other forms of violence (suicide, sexual violence, child maltreatment, general violence). Finally, the researcher will assess the relevance of findings regarding risk and protective factors for IPV perpetration to the population of men enrolled in treatment programs from these same communities via quantitative surveys of men ages 18 to 35 (n=450) participating in five batterer intervention programs situated within communities served by participating community health centers. This comparison will be vital to determining whether the risk and protective factors identified are relevant to present interventions for men who batter their female partners.