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Research projects

RISKSAM: Structured collaboration to prevent stalking and intimate partner violence - Implementation and evaluation of a risk management model for the social services and the police

About this project

Project information

Project status

In progress 2019 - 2025

Contact

Susanne Strand

Research subject

Research environments

Intimate partner violence (IPV) and stalking is a pervasive public health problem. One in three women reports that she has experienced IPV at some point. The violence is problematic for both the individual and society. To facilitate prevention, it needs to be prioritized.

The crime prevention resources available today have relatively low effect. Exposure and recidivism are common and the quality of life for the victims and their children is low, especially in rural areas. Today, the collaboration between the police and the social services is to a large extent built on personal contacts and understanding. It makes the current way of working very vulnerable. One person quitting their job, or authorities reorganizing their activities may be enough for the conditions to change.

RISKSAM is a six-year project (2019-2025) that is financed by FORTE. The project goal is to implement a new model for the collaboration between the police and social services when it comes to intimate partner violence and stalking.

The whole project has an urban and rural perspective, as well as a children's perspective.

RISKSAM examines:

  • Collaboration within and between the police and social services
  • Recidivism
  • Socio-economic costs
  • Working environment for the staff handling these cases
  • Quality of life for the victims and their children

Substudy 1 RISKSAM

Part 1 of the project involves developing a new model for structured collaboration on risk management. The model is called RISKSAM and it is set up to help the police and social services in their work with intimate partner violence and stalking.

RISKSAM is a model both for structured collaboration between and within the police and social services, and for managing risks for the victim.

The study is carried out in collaboration with the police and social services in Örebro, Karlstad and Falun.

To examine whether change occurs when RISKSAM is used, the study collects data from police reports, judgments, and contacts with social services relating to intimate partner violence and stalking.

The model will then be reworked based on the lessons learned during the first part of the substudy. After the recast, another study will be implemented in 12 randomly selected municipalities in Värmland, Dalarna and Örebro County. Finally, RISKSAM will be adapted once again before it is put to use.

Substudy 2a KOSTSAM

Economic research and economic evaluation of efforts for handling intimate partner violence and stalking is an unexplored area in Sweden. There is a lack of research on the economic effects of efforts within authorities of the judicial system and, to some extent, even social services. What are the costs if society does not collaborate on risk management within the police and social services? What would the costs be if they did?

The aim of this part of the project is to examine the cost-effectiveness from working with the new model RISKSAM. The study produces a baseline for the costs – for society and the individual – of intimate partner violence and stalking.

The study collects cost-diaries and obtains register extracts to learn more about the timeline in different cases from when a risk assessment is made until a long-term intervention is introduced.

Substudy 2b KOSTSAM

Police and social services work with risk assessment and risk management of intimate partner violence and stalking is an extensive and demanding task. Both the police and social services are dependent on well-functioning collaboration with other authorities and organizations. Collaborating effectively with other partners in a clear and structured way not only leads to a better outcome for the victim; it also affects the working environment and job satisfaction for the police officers and social workers involved.

This part of the project examines social workers and police officers experiences from internal and external collaboration on risk assessment and risk management of intimate partner violence and stalking.

This study also examines experiences from working with the new model RISKSAM.

Individual in-depth interviews and focus group interviews will be done with staff from the police and social services. In conjunction with the interviews, the participant will be asked to fill in a questionnaire. The purpose of the questionnaire is to measure job satisfaction and psychosocial working environment relative to duties involving intimate partner violence and stalking.

The focus of the study is to gain more knowledge about job satisfaction and the psychosocial working environment for those working with these cases.

Substudy 3 LIVSAM

Welfare and quality of life have long been studied by looking at different economic and social indicators, such as working conditions, social networks, housing, leisure habits and health.

Today, most researchers agree that people’s experience of quality of life can be defined partly as life satisfaction, partly as emotional well-being. People’s health, in particular people’s mental health, financial resources, social relations, and leisure activities are all important factors for how quality of life is perceived.

The aim with this part of the project is to understand the significance of risk management according to the RISKSAM model for the quality of life for the victims. The victims include both adults that have experienced intimate partner violence or stalking and their children who have witnessed it.

The study includes a questionnaire about life satisfaction and interviews people that have experienced intimate partner violence or stalking. To include the children’s perspective, children aged 13-17, whose parent has experienced intimate partner violence will also be interviewed.

The interviewees will also be asked to fill in a form with questions about life satisfaction, post-traumatic stress, social support, perceived fear, and perceived violence.

Substudy 4 THEORY

The final part of the project aims at developing a theory about how risk management strategies are used in cases of intimate partner violence and stalking.

A theory is needed for us to better understand how and why risk and vulnerability factors matter in cases of intimate partner violence and stalking.

Theory development will progress throughout the project and is rooted in the theory about risk, needs and susceptibility.

Previous research lacks focus on the vulnerability of the victim and her ability to implement the proposed measures. Developing that part is therefore an important component for understanding how risk management strategies and their various measures affect the victim.

Research funding bodies

  • The Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare (FORTE)

Collaborators

  • Socialtjänst och polis inom region Bergslagen,