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Editor’s Introduction: Violence, Victimization and Prevention

Sónia Maria Martins Caridade
1,* and
Maria Alzira Pimenta Dinis
Psychology Research Center, School of Psychology, University of Minho, Campus de Gualtar, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal
Fernando Pessoa Research, Innovation and Development Institute (FP-I3ID), University Fernando Pessoa (UFP), Praça 9 de Abril 349, 4249-004 Porto, Portugal
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Soc. Sci. 2024, 13(3), 158;
Submission received: 4 March 2024 / Accepted: 4 March 2024 / Published: 8 March 2024
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Violence, Victimization and Prevention)
Violence is a complex, multifaceted, and multi-determined phenomenon (Dahlberg and Krug 2006) that victimizes the lives of many children, adolescents, adults, and the elderly on a daily basis. Violence and victimization permeate various cultures and systems—including in individual, family, school, and social contexts—as well as subsystems such as conjugal, parental, peer, and dating relationships (WHO 2014), and these are present both offline and online (Caridade and Dinis 2020a). These phenomena impact numerous areas, including physical and mental health, criminal justice, and social welfare, potentially hindering social development (WHO 2014; Seth and Peshevska 2014). Experiencing violence is a significant risk factor for developing social and health-related problems throughout one’s life (Rossi and Talevi 2017). Therefore, there are continuous efforts made to achieve an understanding of how various forms of violence manifest, with the aim of identifying their causes and risk factors in order to inform prevention and intervention policies (Caridade and Dinis 2020b; Hamby 2017).
This Special Issue aims to address violence as a serious public health issue that entails various new forms of victimization, spurred by contemporary societies. This Special Issue brings together fourteen studies, based on different methodological approaches, that explore the multifaceted dimensions of violence, its impact across various contexts, and innovative approaches to its prevention. In this editorial, we aim to summarize the essence and main conclusions of the research included in this Special Issue, offering a glimpse into cutting-edge research that significantly contributes to our understanding and mitigation of violence in society.
This Special Issue includes four literature reviews that expand knowledge on violence across several domains: a bibliometric review on dating violence (Martínez-Heredia et al. 2021), two scoping reviews on cyber interpersonal violence (Machado et al. 2022; Villalonga-Aragón et al. 2023), and a systematic review on cybersecurity within organizations (Sulaiman et al. 2022). These reviews underline the escalating research focus and the critical need for targeted preventive measures against both traditional and emerging forms of violence.
Additionally, this Special Issue addresses specific vulnerable groups, such as adolescents and university students, through studies such as Martínez-González et al.’s (2021) analysis of peer coercion and Recal-Esnoz et al.’s (2021) development of a scale measuring the acceptance of rape myths. Another qualitative study (Mapayi et al. 2023) focuses on the experiences of sexual harassment survivors in Nigerian universities, highlighting the urgent need for enhanced institutional support.
Research exploring the broader societal implications of violence includes Caridade et al.’s (2022) examination of crime fears in Porto, Portugal, and Ferrás et al.’s (2023) study on the territorial distribution of gender-based violence against elderly women in Galicia, Spain. These studies contribute to our understanding of how environmental and social factors influence perceptions of safety and the distribution of violence.
Emphasizing the importance of social inclusion, Ahmad (2023) explore how ethnic minority women navigate autonomy within honor-related contexts. Additional articles focus on the Colombian context, with Banquez-Mendoza et al. (2022) reconstructing the historical memory of armed conflict in the Montes de María and with Bustos and Manrique-Hernandez (2024) analyzing economic causes of conflict recidivism post-FARC peace accord.
This Special Issue concludes with studies on community violence responses (Gebo and Franklin 2023) and the intersection of poverty and violence against women in Palmira, Colombia (Quiñones et al. 2020), advocating for comprehensive strategies to address and prevent violence.
Together, these contributions not only advance our theoretical and empirical knowledge but also underline the urgent need for a comprehensive approach to combat violence across different contexts and populations. Through the described array of articles addressing violence, this Special Issue endeavors to pave the way for future research and policy-making efforts, aiming to foster safer, more inclusive societies.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

List of Contributions

  • Ahmad, Menal. 2023. “You Don’t Want to Be Perceived as Wild and Unruly”: How Ethnic Minority Women Experience and Negotiate Their Autonomy within Honor-Related Contexts. Social Sciences 12: 575.
  • Bustos, William Orlando Prieto, and Johanna Manrique-Hernandez. 2024. Paramilitary Conflict in Colombia: A Case Study of Economic Causes of Conflict Recidivism. Social Sciences 13: 112.
  • Caridade, Sónia, Mariana Magalhães, Vanessa Azevedo, Maria Alzira Pimenta Dinis, Rui Leandro Maia, Rui Estrada, Ana Isabel Sani, and Laura M. Nunes. 2022. Predicting Frequent and Feared Crime Typologies: Individual and Social/Environmental Variables, and Incivilities. Social Sciences 11: 126.
  • Ferrás, Carlos, María José Ginzo Villamayor, and Yolanda García. 2023. Analysis of Location and Spatial Distribution of Elderly Women Victims of Gender Violence. Social Sciences 12: 72.
  • Gebo, Erika, and Brianna Franklin. 2023. Exploring Responses to Community Violence Trauma Using a Neighborhood Network of Programs. Social Sciences 12: 518.
  • Machado, Bárbara, Sónia Caridade, Isabel Araújo, and Paula Lobato Faria. 2022. Mapping the Cyber Interpersonal Violence among Young Populations: A Scoping Review. Social Sciences 11: 207.
  • Mapayi, Boladale M., Ibidunni O. Oloniniyi, Olakunle A. Oginni, Onyedikachi J. Opara, Kehinde J. Olukokun, Abigail Harrison, and Morenike O. Folayan. 2023. Stifled Screams: Experiences of Survivors of Sexual Harassment in First-Generation Universities in Southwestern Nigeria. Social Sciences 12: 401.
  • Martínez-González, Marina Begoña, Claudia Patricia Arenas-Rivera, Aura Alicia Cardozo-Rusinque, Aldair Ricardo Morales-Cuadro, Mónica Acuña-Rodríguez, Yamile Turizo-Palencia, and Vicente Javier Clemente-Suárez. 2021. Psychological and Gender Differences in a Simulated Cheating Coercion Situation at School. Social Sciences 10: 265.
  • Martínez-Heredia, Nazaret, Gracia González-Gijón, Andrés Soriano Díaz, and Ana Amaro Agudo. 2021. Dating Violence: A Bibliometric Review of the Literature in Web of Science and Scopus. Social Sciences 10: 445.
  • Quiñones, Karen, Paris A. Cabello-Tijerina, Máximo Vicuña de la Rosa, and Wilfrido Newton Quiñones Londoño. 2020. Strategies for Territorial Peace: The Overcoming of the Structural Violence in Women Living in Palmira, Colombia. Social Sciences 9: 211.
  • Recalde-Esnoz, Irantzu, Héctor Del Castillo, and Gemma Montalvo. 2021. Sexual AssaultMyths Acceptance in University Campus: Construction and Validation of a Scale. Social Sciences 10: 462.
  • Sulaiman, Noor Suhani, Muhammad Ashraf Fauzi, Walton Wider, Jegatheesan Rajadurai, Suhaidah Hussain, and Siti Aminah Harun. 2022. Cyber–Information Security Compliance and Violation Behaviour in Organisations: A Systematic Review. Social Sciences 11: 386.
  • Villalonga-Aragón, Maria, César Merino-Soto Manuel Martí-Vilar, and Lizley Tantalean-Terrones. 2023. A Scoping Review of Educational Interventions to Increase Prosociality against Gender-Based Violence in University Bystanders. Social Sciences 12: 406.


  1. Banquez-Mendoza, Jesús G., Marina B. Martínez-González, José Amar-Amar, and Laura V. López-Muñoz. 2022. Reconstruction of Historical Memory: A Methodological Approach to Uncover the Reasons of the Armed Uprising in the Montes de María, Colombia. Social Sciences 11: 103. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  2. Caridade, Sónia Maria Martins, and Maria Alzira Pimenta Dinis. 2020a. Adolescent Dating Violence: Outcomes, Challenges and Digital Tools. New York: Nova Science Publishers. ISBN 9781536174793. [Google Scholar]
  3. Caridade, Sónia Maria Martins, and Maria Alzira Pimenta Dinis, eds. 2020b. Adolescent Dating Violence: Outcomes, Preventive Practices and Further Challenges. In Adolescent Dating Violence: Outcomes, Challenges and Digital Tools. New York: Nova Science Publishers, pp. 1–18. [Google Scholar]
  4. Dahlberg, Linda L., and Etienne G. Krug. 2006. Violence a global public health problem. Ciência & Saúde Coletiva 11: 277–92. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  5. Hamby, Sherry. 2017. On defining violence, and why it matters. Psychology of Violence 7: 167–80. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  6. Rossi, Alessandro, and Dalila Talevi. 2017. Interpersonal violence and mental illness. Journal of Psychopathology 23: 49–51. [Google Scholar]
  7. Seth, Dinesh, and Dimitrinka Jordanova Peshevska. 2014. Preventing interpersonal violence in Europe. Macedonian Journal of Medical Sciences 2: 350–52. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  8. WHO (World Health Organization). 2014. Global Status Report on Violence Prevention. Geneva: World Health Organization. [Google Scholar]
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Caridade, S.M.M.; Dinis, M.A.P. Editor’s Introduction: Violence, Victimization and Prevention. Soc. Sci. 2024, 13, 158.

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Caridade SMM, Dinis MAP. Editor’s Introduction: Violence, Victimization and Prevention. Social Sciences. 2024; 13(3):158.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Caridade, Sónia Maria Martins, and Maria Alzira Pimenta Dinis. 2024. "Editor’s Introduction: Violence, Victimization and Prevention" Social Sciences 13, no. 3: 158.

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