2, June, 2015
DESIGN AND METHODS PAPER

Beyond Domestic Violence Laws: What Else Makes Responses to Domestic Violence Effective?

This research design and methods paper is a working document, and the first stage in the conduct of a joint comparative research in the topic of effective responses to domestic violence. The research will study the cases of Ghana and Mexico and analyse how and to what extent these lessons can be applied to other countries in Africa and Latin America.

In the last twenty-five years, there has been growing recognition both from the academic and activist communities that domestic violence is a public issue worthy of attention. The response has largely been the enactment of domestic violence laws across many different countries both in Africa and Latin America. While there are many studies from the NGO and academic communities documenting these efforts, there is little attention to the exact ways in which implementation of the Domestic Violence Acts makes a difference in terms of effective responses to domestic violence in these various countries.

Given that both Mexico and Ghana enacted domestic violence laws in 2007 but after eight years of implementation have seen no major change in the prevalence of domestic violence, this study affords us the opportunity to undertake a comparative investigation of how diverse conditions make a difference in the effectiveness of the response to domestic violence.

 

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