Project title: The consequences of stalking
Stalking is defined as a systematic series of attempted approaches, incidents and behaviours that are experienced by the victim as unwanted, repeated and persistent, and which are perceived as transgressive and intimidating for the victim. A population survey from the Danish Ministry of Justice from 2018 showed that 2% of Danes between the ages of 18 and 74 had been victims of stalking within the past year, which means that between 67,000 and 98,000 Danes are victims of stalking every year.
With this project, we want to contribute with an in-depth and broad mapping of the psychological consequences of stalking and the needs of stalking victims. With this project, we will investigate some of the issues surrounding stalking that are underexplored in the national and international literature in the field. These issues are all relevant to shed light on in order to provide effective and customised support and treatment for stalking victims.
The project uses a mixed methods design and can be roughly divided into 4 phases that are expected to overlap:
1. Systematic review. The purpose of the first phase is to create a systematic overview of the existing international knowledge on stalking and psychological consequences.
2. Analyses of psychological effects. The purpose of this phase is to gain more knowledge about Danish stalking victims seeking treatment. A greater knowledge of these victims can help clarify what efforts should be put in place to help stalking victims in Denmark, including legal, police and treatment efforts.
3. Analyses of risk and protective factors. Here we will examine how different factors surrounding the stalking process and the stalking victim affect the severity or type of psychological consequences of stalking.
4. Qualitative study. Here we will explore the experience of being a victim of stalking. The purpose of this study is to complement and nuance the issues that we explore in the previous phases.
The results of this project will increase knowledge and understanding of the psychosocial consequences of stalking and their impact on victims' everyday lives and support needs. The project will also contribute to a greater understanding of the risk factors and protective factors that have an impact on the psychosocial consequences that victims experience during and after stalking. Overall, we expect the results to contribute to expanding the knowledge base for the treatment and prevention of stalking and its consequences, which will benefit both victims and the rest of society.
Start date and expected end date: 01.10.2022-01.04.2025
Main supervisor: Ask Elklit, Professor
Co-supervisors: Maria Louison Vang, Associate Professor & Dorte Christiansen, Assistant Professor
Research group: National Centre for Psychotraumatology
Collaborators: Dansk Stalking Center
Keywords: Stalking, trauma, violence, psychotraumatology