Topic: Violence and abuse

Reasons why women and men do not report physical abuse and other degrading and illegal behaviour by their spouse or partner to the police.

2015 This project has been completed 2019

Project Manager

Project Members

  • Rosten, Monika

Main objective

Research shows that only about one fourth of women and men who are subject to physical abuse, threats, harassment and other degrading behaviour from a spouse or a partner report this to the police. We already know a little from studies of related themes, but with this study it will be the first time that the question of why this happens is researched specifically in Norway. In a large survey of violence and rape in Norway, published by NKVTS in 2014, more than half of the respondents answered “other reasons” when asked why they had not reported serious physical and sexual abuse. The general aim of this study will be to get more in-depth and extensive knowledge about these reasons. 

Subsidiary objectives

We would also like to find out what, if anything, would have had to be different (what conditions would have had to be met) if the participants in our study were to report their spouse or partner to the police. The results of the research may be of interest in future surveys when it comes to setting up more relevant answer categories. 


The study is based on qualitative interviews where women and men will be able to contextualize their decision not to report the abuse to the police. 


Grøvdal, Y. (2019). “Ikke verdt å gå til politiet med”: Om vold i parforhold som ikke er anmeldt [«Not worth telling the police”. Intimate partner violence that has not been reported] Norwegian only. Oslo: Nasjonalt kunnskapssenter om vold og traumatisk stress. (Rapport 5/2019).