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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Where do we want to get and how? Outlining the Challenges - AlexanderButchart

Dr. Alexander Butchart is the Prevention of Violence Coordinator in the Department of Violence and Injury Prevention and Disability at the World Health Organisation. His discussion surrounded the topic of my Global Violence Prevention Field and outlined some of the objectives of what we need to do to create this. One topic which was discussed during the question period had to do with the definitions of violence that we should prioritise in our research. Alexander recommended that we look at interpersonal violence as this affects all countries and leads to risk factors for lifelong risks to health and social problems.

His recommendation for creating a Violence Prevention Field is that we involve international actors, intellectual, institutional and financial links all with a shared focus on evidence-based control. To do this, we need to think realistically about whether or not we are able to create global objectives or global baseline targets. I agree that it's unrealistic to frame this approach around the need to meet targets and set objectives that everyone needs to work towards. I also agree with Alexander that what we need in order to move forward is collaboration with the basics which includes creating surveys that not only include economic, public health and family factors. We need surveys that also work to collect information on violence, aggression and protective factors. 

It was interesting to have the discussion of risk factors, or what the higher income countries have defined as risk factors. When we are researching the low medium income countries, we really should be asking ourselves whether or not the same risk factors apply. 

What must be done? We need to advocate for a global political prioritisation of violence prevention, integrate knowledge and skills and promote peace and non-violence in education programmes. 

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A. Neaverson

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