Journal of Aggression, Conflict and Peace Research

Emerald Group Publishing Limited
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Latest documents

  • Guest editorial
  • Perception of cyberbullying among students: the study of a developing country

    Purpose: This study aims to investigate students’ perceptions regarding the causes and effects of cyberbullying among university students. The study also establishes whether or not there would be statistically significant differences among cyberbullying victims, perpetrators, victim-perpetrators and bystanders in their thoughts on the causes and effects of cyberbullying on students’ social lives from a developing country perspective. Design/methodology/approach: This study uses quantitative approach and cross-sectional survey design to collect primary data from 1,374 undergraduate students sampled from selected public universities in Ghana. Descriptive statistics and analysis of variance analyses were carried out using statistical package for the social sciences. Findings: The study reports popularity among friends, extortion, retaliation, stress, trauma and low self-esteem as causes of cyberbullying. Also, cyberbullying resulted in difficulty trusting people, low self-esteem and increased stress. The study also found statistically significant differences among cyberbullying victims, perpetrators, victim-perpetrators and bystanders in their thoughts on the causes and effects of cyberbullying on students’ social lives. Practical implications: The study’s findings imply that cyberbullying has some fairly significant negative effects on students’ lives in Ghana and must be taken more seriously. Conditions must be created to ensure that perpetrators and victims are given the support needed to curb this menace. Detailed remediating measures are provided in the study. Originality/value: This paper contributes to the existing literature by studying cyberbullying perceptions among students from a relatively bully-tolerant culture.

  • Effect of educational intervention based on theory of planned behavior on aggression preventive behaviors in students

    Purpose: Aggressive behaviors are common among students. Given the importance of education in reducing aggressive behavior, this study aims to examine the influence of a theory of planned behavior (TPB)-based educational intervention on aggression-preventive behaviors in fifth-grade male students in Fasa city, Iran. Design/methodology/approach: A total of 120 male students were randomly picked from several public schools in Fasa city, Iran, between 2018 and 2019. Assessments were completed before and three months after the intervention. Intervention consisted of eight 55–60-min training sessions based on the TPB’s processes and constructs. Findings: Prior to the educational intervention, there was no significant difference between the two groups in terms of attitude, subjective norms, perceived behavioral control, intention to stop aggressiveness or to engage in aggression-preventive activities. However, three months following the intervention, the experimental group demonstrated a considerable rise in the aforementioned constructs (p > 0.001 in all cases). Originality/value: The study’s findings demonstrated the efficacy of a TPB-based educational intervention on constructs of the TPB theory. Results suggest application of a TPB-based educational intervention can have a pro-social impact on the attitudes and behavior of elementary age boys.

  • Surviving intimate partner violence and disaster

    Purpose: Few studies investigating disaster have examined the risks associated with surviving both disaster and intimate partner violence (IPV). IPV is psychological or physical abuse in a personal relationship. Using an intersectional approach, the purpose of this study is to investigate contributions to and differences in perceived stress and personal resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic among a sample of predominantly female-identified IPV survivors (n = 41) to examine risks associated with this vulnerable population during disaster. Design/methodology/approach: Using a structured interview guide, IPV survivors were interviewed regarding their perceived stress (i.e. perceived stress scale), personal resilience, (i.e. Connor Davidson Resilience Scale), type of violence experienced (i.e. physical violence), COVID-19-related stressors (i.e. loss of income due to the pandemic) and relevant socio-demographic characteristics (i.e. race). Findings: These interviews indicate that participants exhibited low levels of resilience and a moderate amount of stress exposure highlighting risk factors associated with experiencing personal violence during disaster. Originality/value: At the height of their need for support and assistance, the disaster generated additional rent and nutritional stress compounding the pressures violence survivors face. These findings suggest those who are socially vulnerable due to violence need structural support services to cope with disaster and violence-related stresses.

  • The inheritance of local wisdom for maintaining peace in multicultural society

    Purpose: The research aims to investigate the value of local wisdom, analyse local wisdom for the harmony of a multicultural society and discover forms of inheritance of local wisdom for maintaining peace. Design/methodology/approach: Qualitative research was used in this research. The primary data were obtained through observation, in-depth interviews and focus group discussions. Secondary data were obtained through reports from agencies, such as Social Services and Central Bureau of Statistics, literature studies and news from the internet. The data validity technique used was source triangulation. The data were analysed with stages of data reduction, data presentation and conclusion. Findings: The results showed that the local wisdom sedekah bumi, selamatan malam 1 suro, sadranan and kuda lumping contain values related to religion, cooperation, harmony, togetherness, kinship and cohesiveness; the implementation of local wisdom can strengthen social harmony; and the inheritance of local wisdom takes place sustainably from families and communities to the younger generation. Research limitations/implications: The research was conducted during the peak of COVID-19 cases in Central Java, Indonesia. Therefore, the data could not be obtained maximally. Practical implications: This research contributes widely not only to the village studied but also to other communities with similar conditions. Social implications: The inheritance of local wisdom can help maintain peace, unify societies and offer solution to social conflicts by implementing traditions containing humanity and peaceful values. Originality/value: This research offers a new insight concerning the inheritance of local wisdom that can function as a tool to achieve a peaceful society and prevent social disasters from occurring.

  • Did we get civic activism wrong? Understanding the waltz between constructive and aggressive civic tendencies in Bosnia–Herzegovina

    Purpose: Despite the end of conflict in 1995, Bosnia–Herzegovina still suffers from unresolved ethnic and social tensions, where fostering social cohesion, active citizenship and mitigating ethnonationalist tensions and politically motivated violence remains among the main goals to achieve transformative peace. This paper, based on quantitative analyses of 3,637 adult respondents, shows that the tendency of Bosnians to be active or violent citizens sometimes overlaps and are not very distinct patterns of behaviour. The purpose of this paper is to identify factors that differentiate pathways and help explain (un)civil civic behaviours and inform the work of peace and development actors. Design/methodology/approach: The paper is based on a quantitative household survey conducted with a representative sample of 3,637 adults in Bosnia and by using a wide range of statistical tools from scaling to correlation analysis. This data set measures factors and conceptual notions associated with passive, constructive and aggressive civic tendencies and social cohesion in a nuanced way by using different metrics and scales. The survey was designed and conducted by The Centre for Sustainable Peace and Democratic Development (SeeD) and the Bosnia–Herzegovina Resilience Initiative in 2020, in partnership with The United States Agency for International Development (USAID)/The Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI) and The International Organization for Migration (IOM) for the SCORE Bosnia–Herzegovina study (SeeD, 2020). Findings: Overall, the factors that were discovered to be linked to the manifestation of constructive and aggressive civic tendencies are multidimensional, and range from intergroup relations (e.g. tension, tolerance) to political and civic attitudes (e.g. ethnonationalism, civic responsibility, gender equality), from individual traits (e.g. education, economic stress) to the media landscape (e.g. information consumption). While the empirical evidence shows that some of these factors can push citizens towards both active and violent civic behaviours simultaneously, this study identifies and distinguishes those that can reduce aggressive civic tendencies while increasing constructive civic tendencies. Practical implications: This paper proposes a replicable approach and evidence-based conclusions which can help validate the theories of change for the peace and development actors to ensure that scarce peacebuilding resources are invested where the impact is greatest, and the actors can protect the sanctity of their responsibility to do no harm. Social implications: This paper seeks to provide a robust empirical understanding for more effective policy-making and programming that can support Bosnia–Herzegovina’s endogenous resilience against socio-political shocks and transformative peace trajectory. This paper seeks to demonstrate how peace and development actors can build and use an evidence-base for understanding civic behaviours and as a result formulate tailored efforts with greater likelihood of impact. This would help fulfil commitments towards sustainable development goals and the 2030 global agenda (UN General Assembly, 2015). Originality/value: This study contributes insights to the emerging literature at the nexus of peacebuilding, individual skills/attitudes and civic behaviour. While the conclusions are highly contextual, the methodology is informed by multidisciplinary literature and is replicable in other post-conflict and non-conflict contexts, and thus can be used for cross-country comparisons and theory building around civic activism and constructive citizenship. The approach distinguishes between passive citizens, constructive activists, aggressive activists and purely violent citizens. This study discovers that the bifurcation is between passive citizens and active citizens, and although constructive and aggressive civic tendencies might be theorised to be contradictory, they overlap and tend to co-occur.

  • The story of a model restorative school: creative response to conflict at MS 217 in Queens, NY

    Purpose: Restorative practice programs in the USA and Western elementary and secondary schools have been the focus of intensive, large scale field research that reports positive impacts on school climate, pro-social student behavior and aggressive behavior. This paper aims to contribute to a gap in the research by reporting a case study of transformation of an urban middle school in a multi-year implementation of restorative practices. Design/methodology/approach: This paper reports how Creative Response to Conflict (CRC) supported the transformation of Middle School 217, in Queens, NY, from a school with one of the highest suspension rates in New York City to a model restorative school. CRC’s model, which incorporates the themes of cooperation, communication, affirmation, conflict resolution, mediation, problem-solving, bias awareness, bullying prevention and intervention, social-emotional learning and restorative practices, helped shift the perspective and practice of the entire school community from punitive to restorative. Findings: Implementation of a full school advisory program using restorative circles for all meetings and classes and development of a 100% respect program committing all school community members to dignified and respectful treatment aided the transformation. Key to MS 217’s success was the collaboration of multiple non-profit organizations for provision of peer mediation training, after-school follow-up work, staff coaching and preventative cyberbullying training through the Social Media-tors! Program. Research limitations/implications: Challenges to the restorative practices implementation are reviewed with attention to the implementation online during COVID-19. Originality/value: Next steps in the program post-COVID are articulated as a best practice model for other schools interested in adopting MS 217’s commitment, creativity and community-building to become a model restorative school.

  • When cyberaggression is personal: gender differences in threats and betrayals of partners and friends

    Purpose: New ways of perpetrating relational aggression have been facilitated by the increased availability and adoption of technology for communication, resulting in growing cyberaggression rates over the past few decades. Few studies have examined whether perpetrators of cyberaggression are more likely to target friends or romantic partners (or both) and whether this differs across the gender of the perpetrator. This is the key focus of the current study. Design/methodology/approach: Participants completed an online survey which assessed three types of cyberaggression (threatened to share secrets, shared secrets and posted embarrassing pictures) against friends and then also against romantic partners. The sample included 678 undergraduate university students who were in a romantic relationship at the time of the survey (72.6% female and 27.4% male, age range 18–50 years, average 21.7 and SD = 4.5). Findings: The results of this study showed that a significantly higher proportion of males than females perpetrated cyberaggression against friends and romantic partners. In addition, a significantly higher proportion of males engaged in “general” cyberaggression (targeting both friends and romantic partners), whilst a higher proportion of females engaged in “selective” cyberaggression (targeting either friends or romantic partners). Originality/value: Collectively, this study tells us that whilst there has been wide examination of cyberaggression more broadly, very few studies explore who perpetrators target (i.e. the victim–offender relationship), especially across gender of the perpetrator. The current study is original in that it asks perpetrators to report who they target and then examines gender differences in perpetration rates across victim–offender relationships.

  • The urgency of linking peace and citizenship education

    Purpose: The aim of this paper is to highlight the utility of different sources of learning in informal, formal and non-formal venues in lifelong learning developing under variable contextual conditions. This calls for an integration of two fields that have been isolated for too long, namely, citizenship education and peace education. Design/methodology/approach: Untrue, indoctrinating and even coercive communications negate learning that contributes to the formation of convictions based in conscientization. Political awareness is imperative for strengthening the human being’s influence as an historical subject and participant in present and future social movements. Findings: Traditionally, citizenship education focused on citizens’ understanding of and relation to national political systems and domestic affairs. This focus was later enlarged to both a sub-national civic culture and to international orientations with an increasing interest in the global dimension. Peace education originated in peace research and action embedded in an understanding of peace from a value perspective aiming at transformation towards alternative visions of the future. Learners’ perceptions of problems, conflicts and contradictions ranging from local to global levels are starting points for a politicization approach in peace education. Originality/value: It is claimed in this paper that this comprehensive approach in peace education is imperative in citizenship education in any society. The rationale for this integration of citizenship and peace education is that becoming and being a citizen involves a lifelong process of learning aiming at increasing political awareness and influence.

  • A multi-level, time-series network analysis of the impact of youth peacebuilding on quality peace

    Purpose: Over 60% of armed conflicts re-occur; the seed of future conflict is sown even as a peace agreement is signed. The cyclical nature of war calls for a focus on youth who can disrupt this pattern over time. Addressing this concern, the developmental peace-building model calls for a dynamic, multi-level and longitudinal approach. Using an innovative statistical approach, this study aims to investigate the associations among four youth peace-building dimensions and quality peace. Design/methodology/approach: Multi-level time-series network analysis of a data set containing 193 countries and spanning the years between 2011 and 2020 was performed. This statistical approach allows for complex modelling that can reveal new patterns of how different youth peace-building dimensions (i.e. education, engagement, information, inclusion), identified through rapid evidence assessment, promote quality peace over time. Such a methodology not only assesses between-country differences but also within-country change. Findings: While the within-country contemporaneous network shows positive links for education, the temporal network shows significant lagged effects for all four dimensions on quality peace. The between-country network indicates significant direct effects of education and information, on average, and indirect effects of inclusion and engagement, on quality peace. Originality/value: This approach demonstrates a novel application of multi-level time-series network analysis to explore the dynamic development of quality peace, capturing both stability and change. The analysis illustrates how youth peace-building dimensions impact quality peace in the macro-system globally. This investigation of quality peace thus illustrates that the science of peace does not necessitate violent conflict.

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