The Predictive Validity of Intimate Partner Violence Risk Assessments Conducted by Practitioners in Different Settings—a Review of the Literature

August 10, 2019 | By Klara Svalin & Sten Levander

Journal of Police and Criminal Psychology

Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a global health problem with severe consequences. One way to prevent repeat IPV is to identify the offender’s risk of recidivism by conducting a risk assessment and then implement interventions to reduce the risk. In order to be effective, accurate risk assessments and effective interventions are required. Practitioners in different settings are conducting IPV risk assessments, but the predictive validity of practitioners’ IPV assessments has not been studied via a comprehensive literature search. This is the overall aim of the present study. The literature search was conducted in five different databases and at three different publisher sites. The selection of studies was based on nine different inclusion and exclusion criteria. The number of studies that fulfilled the criteria was unexpectedly small (N = 11). One of the studies was conducted in a treatment setting, the others in criminal justice settings. The predictive accuracy for the global risk assessments ranged from low to medium. The role of treatment or other interventions to prevent repeat IPV had been analyzed in one way or another in eight of the studies. There is a knowledge gap, the reasons of which are discussed.

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