Research can protect against violence

The definition of unacceptable violence against children varies between European countries. – This variation is mirrored in the research, according to Carolina Øverlien, NKVTS' Head of research on violence and trauma among children and youth.

– Countries where parental violence and physical punishment is acceptable, often lack research on the harmful effects it can have on children, Øverlien says.

If national research is to be regarded as good and rigorous, it needs to be of a quality that’s accepted by recognised international journals.

– In countries where research on violence is relatively new, they normally don’t write about new phenomena and connections, resulting in a “knowledge gap” between differing European countries, Øverlien says.

This also leads to variations in the amount of international publishing of research.

– After the European Conference on Domestic Violence in Porto in 2017, the Journal of Family Violence wanted to publish a special issue on European research on violence, and I became the editor.

Øverlien explains that they accepted some submissions from Southern and Eastern Europe that might otherwise not have been accepted in an international journal.

– It’s important that countries with a new research community are heard in an international context, and that we shed light on the living conditions of children and women in these countries, especially related to violence, states Øverlien.


The complete interview (in Norwegian).

The special issues of the Journal of Family Violence.