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Associative links between deprivation and domestic violence and abuse

Exploring the links between domestic violence and deprivation.

Key details

Lead institution
Principal researcher(s)
Michael Jimenez
Police region
North West
Collaboration and partnership

Greater Manchester Police

Level of research
Project start date
Date due for completion

Research context

Domestic violence and abuse (DVA) is increasingly being recognised as a public health matter, with risks and costs to both individuals and society as a whole.

Recently, and given the reducing budgets available to the police, DVA has taken an increasing prominence across the force, recognising the vulnerability, intimidation, and organisational risks that sit at the heart of each incident.

Several authors (Coker, 2016; Golden and others, 2013; Wright and Benson, 2011) have shown a link between deprivation, particularly economic deprivation, and the incidence of DVA in a community. This is not unique to DVA. Indeed, deprivation has been linked with higher incidences of violent and acquisitive offences (Fajnzylber and others, 2002) and in a case study conducted in San Francisco, increased levels of both victimisation and criminality (Whittle and others, 2015).

Manchester forms one of the most deprived areas in the UK, with 256 of its 282 lower-layer super output areas counted within the most deprived 50% of the country according to the English Indices of Multiple Deprivation (see Smith and others, 2015) and will be the subject of this study.

Using data from Greater Manchester Police (GMP) – the territorial police force responsible for policing Manchester and recording incidents of DVA – combined with data from the Department for Communities and Local Government, this dissertation seeks to contribute to a growing area of literature that has thus far been confined to other areas of the globe.

The aims of the project are to:

  • understand whether the links between deprivation and DVA found in other countries extend to the UK
  • explore how deprivation affects occurrences of DVA
  • examine the recording of DVA incidents by GMP

Research methodology

This study will be using secondary data analysis to accomplish its aims. Public protection incidents coded for DVA will be anonymised, with address data aggregated into lower-layer super output areas. Computer aided qualitative data analysis will be applied to textual field within the reports that discuss the circumstances of the incidents using a thematic framework developed from a thorough literature review.

The aggregate address data will be subject to regression analysis against the Indicies of Multiple Deprivation data held by the Department for Communities and Local Government.

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