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ESRC Seminar Series

Addressing intimate partner violence among substance misusers: advancing aetiologies and treatment approaches


Our Aims

ESRC-logoThe overall aim of the Addressing intimate partner violence among substance misusers: advancing aetiologies and treatment approaches seminar series (funded by the Economic and Social Research Council ES/L000644/1) is to share new knowledge about the epidemiology, aetiologies, and typologies of intimate partner violence and to discuss innovative approaches to risk assessment and treatment (including novel technologies) for addressing intimate partner violence victimisation and perpetration among substance misusers. 

A common understanding of the aetiology of IPV among substance misusers will contribute to the development and testing of more effective responses to this dual problem. 

The seminar series will also enhance our knowledge about effective policy and treatment approaches. Several principal competing theories exist as to why certain people are more likely to be perpetrators or victims of IPV on which current treatment approaches are based. 

In order to advance our understanding of best practice, the seminar series will bring together leading academics, early career researchers, PhD students, practitioners, policy makers, educators and other key stakeholders to debate these issues from different perspectives and experiences with a view to learning from each other and informing policy, practice, education & training. 



There will be six sessions in total with three taking place in the UK and three internationally; the series is hosted by a collaboration of partner universities

Information on each topic can be found below and to sign up for seminar two please contact:

Seminar 1 | King's College London, England - 28 March 2014


Consequences of Substance Misuse and intimate partner violence: An International Epidemiological Perspective


  • Welcome and outline of the research seminar series - Dr Gail Gilchrist, National Addiction Centre, King's College London
  • IPV and substance misuse - Dr Gail Gilchrist

A overview of the international literature will be presented to illustrate the association between intimate partner violence perpetration and victimisation and substance use. IPV is one of the leading burdens of disease for women. Female substance misusers who are IPV victims are more likely to experience mental health problems, sex trading and report high-risk sexual and drug-taking behaviours which may be due to the negative influence/ control of the perpetrator . Female substance misusers who are IPV victims may be at greater risk of unplanned pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases, HIV & hepatitis C.  

  • The risk of intimate partner violence victimisation and perpetration among people diagnosed with psychiatric and substance use disorders: results from a meta-analysis and analysis of domestic homicide cases - Dr Sian Oram, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, King's College London

The extent to which mental disorders are associated with an increased risk of perpetration of domestic violence is unclear.  Dr Oram will present findings from two recent studies which aimed to identify the extent to which mental disorders are associated with domestic violence: (1) a systematic review and meta-analysis that aimed to establish the risk of violence against partners among men and women with diagnosed psychiatric disorders; (2) a consecutive case series of all convicted domestic homicide perpetrators in England and Wales between 1997 and 2008 that aimed to examine the prevalence of mental illness and mental health service contact among convicted perpetrators of domestic homicide and the distribution of characteristics associated with convicted perpetrators with and without mental illness at the time of offence. 


Refreshment Break - Henrietta Raphael Function Room

  • Trajectories of Intimate Partner Violence in a depressed primary care cohort: Predictors and Outcomes - Professor Kelsey Hegarty, Primary Care Research Unit, University of Melbourne
There are minimal longitudinal studies of intimate partner violence over time and none from a primary care population.  This presentation assesses longitudinal trajectories of women’s experience of intimate partner violence (IPV) from a depressed cohort and determines time-varying risk factors that differentiate women who follow these different paths and outcomes on mental health at 4 years.


  • Domestic and sexual violence against people with severe mental illness: comparative UK survey - Dr Hind Kalifeh, University College London

Domestic and sexual violence are significant public health problems but little is known on the extent to which men and women with severe mental illness (SMI) are at risk compared with the general population. In this study we recruited a random sample of 303 people with SMI who have been under the care of psychiatric services for more than 1 year, and interviewed them using a modified version of the British Crime Survey domestic/sexual violence module. We compared findings from this patient sample with findings from 22,606 general population controls participating in the contemporaneous national crime survey. Compared to the general population, people with SMI were at substantially increased risk of adulthood and past-year domestic and sexual violence, with a relative excess of family violence and adverse health impact following victimisation. The increased risk is only partially accounted for by substance misuse.


  • Experiences and impact of intimate partner domestic violence and abuse (DVA) in men attending primary care health clinics in England - Professor Marianne Hester, Centre for Gender and Violence Research at the School for Policy Studies University of Bristol

The paper explores experiences and impacts of victimisation and perpetration of intimate DVA on male patients, and associated mental health conditions. The paper is based on data from PROVIDE, a large scale study funded by the National Institute for Health. The survey was conducted between October 2010 and June 2011 in a stratified sample of 16 primary care health clinics in England. Male patients aged 18 or over, attending the clinic alone, who could read and write English, were invited by a researcher to participate in the survey, and 1,403 men (58% of 2,431 men approached) completed the survey, of whom 97% identified as heterosexual.  Men were asked about experience and perpetration regarding a range of potentially abusive physical, sexual and emotional behaviours. Impact was measured by asking about injuries, frequency, severity, and overall impact on life (e.g. no effect or sometimes/often interfered with daily life/made me change the way I did things). Association with mental health issues was measured using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression scale. Multivariate analysis found significant association between experience or perpetration of intimate DVA and negative mental health status for the men. Substance use, in particular alcohol use, was positively, although not strongly, associated, with both experience and perpetration of intimate DVA. Presentation to clinicians of anxiety or depression may be an especially important indicator of male intimate DVA victimisation or perpetration.


Seminar 2 | Rochester Institute of Technology, US - 21 July 2014


The role of Substance Misuse in intimate partner violence: Understanding aetiologies, theories and mechanisms 

  • Monday 21st July 2014 from 8:30am-4:30pm (US time) / 1:30pm-9:30pm UK time)
  • Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, New York, U.S.A.

The goal of this seminar series is the following: Understanding the causes & correlates of IPV among substance misusers will allow us to target specific maladaptive behaviors & link them to interventions that are grounded in evidenced based science & practice. Such practice is crucial in the development of science based clinical assessments & treatments to improve treatment outcomes for this population. The following theories associated with both IPV & substance misuse will be presented: feminist, classical conditioning, operant conditioning, social learning & attachment. The role of neurobiological & genetic etiologies of aggression among substance misusers as well as mechanisms of action will be discussed.


Presentation Schedule:


  • 8:30-9:00: Introductions: Dr Gail Gilchrist & Dr Caroline Easton
  • 9:00-9:30: Neurobiological Correlates, Addiction and Aggressive Behavior: Dr Richard Doolittle
  • 9:30-10:30: Alcohol and Aggression: Dr Ken Leonard
  • 10:30-10:45: Break
  • 10:45-11:45: Alcohol, Anger Control and IPV: Dr Chris Eckhardt
  • 11:45-12:45: LUNCH
  • 12:45-13:45: Attachment Theory, Addiction and IPV: Program Director, Dave Eckert
  • 13:45-14:45: CBT, Addiction and IPV: Dr Caroline Easton
  • 14:45-15:00: Break
  • 15:00-15:30: Motivational Enhancement, Addiction and IPV: Dr Cory Crane
  • 15:30-16:30: Understanding the Duluth Model of Care: Community Response, Project Respect, Stand-up Guys by CEO, Carl Hatch-Heir, Director of Project Respect & Stand-up Guys, Pete Navratil & Supervisor/Trainer of Duluth Models of Care at Delphi & Project Respect.
  • 16:30-17:00: Panel Discussions, Feedback from Service Users and Conclusions


Seminar 3 | Glasgow Caledonian University, Scotland - 10 October 2014


Typologies and psychological contributions 

  • Friday 10th October 2014
  • Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU), Room B221 Brittania Building

Organisers: Professor Liz Gilchrist and Dr Lana Ireland

Seminar details can be found HERE.

Presentation Schedule:

12:00 - 13:00      

Lunch, coffee and welcome  
13:00 - 13:10  Introduction to seminar series Dr Gail Gilchrist 
13:10 - 13:30 Overview of IPV research at GCU Prof. Liz Gilchrist
13:30 - 14:15 The Scotia Project: Roles of Alcohol in Domestic Abuse Dr Alasdair Forsyth & Dr Lana Ireland
14:15 - 15:00 Typologies of Domestic Violence Offenders & Clinical Case Presentations Prof. Caroline Easton
15:00 – 15:30 Coffee and refreshments  
15:30 – 16:15  IPV in ethnic minority communities, what are the risks and is alcohol a feature?  Elaine McLaughlin & Dr Liz Frondigoun

16:15 – 17:00


Drawing it together: typologies, implicit associations, cultural norms, and new interventions: can they help?  Prof. Liz Gilchrist

Alcohol & other drugs have been identified as common features of IPV, via intoxication at the time of abusive events & as a correlate of abusive relationships. Surprisingly little is known about how this association functions. There remains a dearth of rigorous debate as to the various roles of substances & the implications of substance use in IPV. This has curtailed understanding of causal pathways, and has limited development in theoretical approaches to interventions for IPV. This seminar will provide a review of links across substance misuse & IPV.

Drs. Ireland and Forsyth will present quantitative & qualitative findings from The Scotia Project, comparing experiences of IPV and alcohol use among IPV offenders, those seeking help for relationship conflict, victims/survivors of IPV, and a community sample. Elaine McLaughlin and Dr. Frondigoun will present data from victim survivors with ethnic minority backgrounds exploring important features in these situations and addressing the issue as to whether alcohol is relevant here. Caroline Easton will discuss her work on perpetrator typologies, linking these with clinical case presentations.

These data will be linked with previous research on typologies within IPV, implicit thinking about relationships and about alcohol, and with evaluations of innovative interventions in this area. We aim to explore whether these data can help unravel the complexity of these cases and provide a theoretical scaffold to inform further research and practice around IPV and substance misuse.

Seminar 4 | University of Nottingham, England - 11 February 2015

Developing Evidence-Based Management and Treatment for Intimate Partner Violence and Substance Misuse

  • 11th February 2015
  • Jubilee Campus, University of Nottingham

Presentation Schedule:

9.30 - 10.00

 Registration and coffee  

10.00 - 10.15

 Opening introduction Professor Mary McMurran 

10.15 -10.45


Identifying survivors of domestic violence and abuse: the underlying complexity of health care presentations. Dr Julie McGarry

10.45 - 11.15


Addressing intimate partner violence victimisation among female substance misusers: results from a recent systematic review and meta-analysis and a pilot trial Dr Gail Gilchrist & Judit Tirado
11.15 - 11.30 Coffee  
11.30 - 12.00  Men's experiences of victimisation from a female intimate partner: Implications for practice and policy Dr Louise Dixon
12.00 - 12.30 Walking into the punches? Intrasexual competition and Intimate partner violence Dr Vince Egan
12.30 - 13.00 Discussion Dr Katy Jones
13.00 - 14.00 Lunch  
14.00 - 14.30 Independent reports of male and female perpetrated aggression among married or cohabitating community couples: Insight from a dyadic, daily analysis Dr Cory Crane
14.30 - 15.00 The emotion regulation function of substance use and intimate partner violence Dr Nicola Graham-Kevan
15.00 - 15.15 Tea  
15.15 - 16.00 Discussion and Close

Professor Mary McMurran


Speaker profiles for this seminar can be found HERE.

Seminar 5 | University of Melbourne, Australia, 2015 - 29 June 2015

Addressing Domestic Violence Amongst Substance Misusers: Advancing aetiologies and treatment Approaches.

Seminar 5: Novel solutions to addressing domestic violence.
  • 29th June 2015
  • University of Melbourne, 200 Berkeley St-G73 (Theatre), Carlton
Presentation Schedule:


Prof Kelsey Hegarty, University of Melbourne and Dr Gail Gilchrist, National Addiction Centre, King's College London 

9:30am - 11:00am


Adverse effects of drinking on Australian families: perspectives from population surveys and from social response agency caseloads.

Prof Robin Room, Turning Point, University of Melbourne

Public health interventions to address IPV and alcohol misuse.

Ms Ingrid Wilson, Judith Lumley Centre, La Trobe University


11:00am - 11:15am MORNING TEA 
11:15am - 12:45pm

Findings from a mixed-methods study of the prevalence of IPV among men in treatment for substance use.

Implications for interventions to address IPV.

Dr Gail Gilchrist, King's College London

Understanding and integrating cultural frames of reference in the development of intervention strategies to address domestic violence among ethnic minority victims and perpetrators of domestic violence.

A/Prof Puja Kapai, The University of Hong Kong.

12:45pm - 1:30pm LUNCH
1:30pm - 3:00pm

Men's Behaviour Change programs and the role of Alcohol and Other Drug intervention.

Prof Cathy Humphreys, Social Work, University of Melbourne

Early interventions with men who use violence in health settings

Dr Laura Tarzia, General Practice, University of Melbourne

3:00pm - 3:15pm AFTERNOON TEA
3:15pm - 4:00pm

Facilitated discussion about future direction in research, policy and practice

Professor Kelsey Hegarty

CLOSING REMARKS Prof Kelsey Hegarty and Dr Gail Gilchrist
The PDF copy of this Presentation Schedule can be downloaded HERE.
Seminar 6 | Hong Kong University, China - 24 October 2015

‘Mind the Culture Gap’: Understanding and Appreciating the Role of Culture in Developing Effective Interventions for IPV.

Seminar 6: Cross-cultural policies to address intimate partner violence.

  • 24th October 2015
  • Academic Conference Room, 11/F Cheng Yu Tung Tower, Centennial Campus, The University of Hong Kong



Presentation Schedule:
10:00am - 10:15am


10:15am - 10:50am


Culture and IPV: A discussion of 3 studies into the roles of alcohol, parenting and culture in families experiencing IPV

Prof Elizabeth Gilchrist, Glasgow Caledonian University


10:50am - 11:25am

Delivering on the Promise of Equal Protection Under the Law: Understanding the Experiences and Help-Seeking Behaviours of Ethnic Minority and Immigrant Victims of Domestic Violence

Ms. Puja Kapai, University of Hong Kong


11:25am - 12:00pm

Formal or informal social control? Responding to family polyvictimization

Dr. Edward Ko-ling Chan, University of Hong Kong


12:00pm - 12:45pm

Open Discussion

12:45pm - 2:00pm


2:00pm - 2:35pm

Accounting for Intimate Partner Violence-perpetration. A cross-cultural comparison of English and Brazilian substance misusing men’s explanations for perpetrating violence towards their intimate partners

Dr. Polly Radcliffe, King's College London

2:35pm - 3:10pm

The male patients of spousal abuse presenting in emergency department: victims or abuser?

Dr. Anna Choi Wai Man

3:10pm - 3:55pm

Open Discussion

3:55pm - 4:15pm

Closing Remarks

4:15pm - 5:00pm

Coffee and Networking

The PDF copy of this Presentation Schedule can be downloaded HERE.

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