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Table 3 Final Ranked Research Priorities after Delphi Round 3

From: Priorities for research in child maltreatment, intimate partner violence and resilience to violence exposures: results of an international Delphi consensus development process

Resilience Priorities
1. Examine the elements underpinning promising or successful programmes in resilience to discover the similarities, beliefs and values inherent in these programmes, so that they can be building blocks for intervention pilot work.
2. Determine the critical requirements for evidence-based resilience interventions at individual, family, community and policy levels.
3. Develop and evaluate interventions to promote resilience in those exposed to CM and/or IPV.
Child Maltreatment Priorities
1.  Examine the elements underpinning promising or successful interventions in child maltreatment to identify common elements based on scientific evidence, so that they can be building blocks of pilot work for interventions (including programmatic, structural and policy-based approaches).
2. Develop and evaluate new interventions for prevention of child maltreatment: 1) before its occurrence, 2) its recurrence and 3) associated impairment. Child maltreatment includes physical, sexual and emotional abuse, neglect and exposure to IPV; interventions may be focused on one or more of the following: children, families and offenders.
3. Determine methods to assess risk and protective factors for adverse consequences from child maltreatment, taking a lifespan approach (e.g. factors that prevent a maltreated child from experiencing negative outcomes in childhood, adolescence or adulthood). This includes understanding the distinction among: poor parenting, family dysfunction and family violence.
4. Adapt/apply existing evidence-based child-maltreatment interventions (primary and secondary prevention for children, families and offenders), including ongoing evaluation to understand which interventions work in which settings/contexts.1
Intimate Partner Violence Priorities
1. Examine the elements underpinning promising or successful models and/or programmes in IPV to discover the similarities, beliefs and values inherent in these programmes, so that they can be building blocks for intervention pilot work, including primary prevention efforts.
2. Develop and evaluate IPV primary prevention interventions directed at those at risk for perpetrating IPV (esp. male youth).
3. Evaluate effectiveness of existing IPV services.
4. Evaluate (broad) policy or structural interventions that may prevent IPV and/or its consequences.
5. Conduct a review and prepare an inventory of the better prevention programmes for IPV in low and middle-income countries (LMICs); ultimately, develop and test prevention programmes that are affordable for LMICs or adapt existing effective programmes so that they are affordable in LMICs.
Cross-Cutting Priorities
1. Integrate violence questions in national and international surveys, as well as administrative data.
2. Evaluate inter-relationships between CM, IPV and other forms of violence across the lifespan; consider a lifespan approach to violence exposures.
3. Assess factors that impact policy decisions including capacity to implement evidence-based CM and IPV prevention on a scale commensurate with these problems - especially in resource-poor settings - and how to increase this capacity.
4. Examine mechanisms (mediators/moderators) in the relationship between exposure to violence and mental health outcomes (including substance abuse) on the continuity of violence.
5. Develop and test models of coordinated care for victims of violence - across community and health settings and including inter-service and interdisciplinary coordination.
Research Methods Priorities
1. Investigate approaches for developing the infrastructure necessary to conduct child maltreatment research* including determining methods for collecting and collating datasets to link data (e.g. child welfare data and mental health data), use of information technology for tracking and integrating services and conducting pooled, meta and sub-group analyses to identify which interventions might be promising for which groups.
2. Determine ways to evaluate studies that do not meet the usual standards of evidence in Evidence-Based Medicine hierarchies (e.g. how to include observational and qualitative studies).
  1. 1Including, but not limited to, Aboriginal and ethnic communities.
  2. *Although child maltreatment was specified in the initial priority, this was expanded to intimate partner violence during the discussions.