University Miguel Hernández of Elche (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2013 Proceedings
Publication year: 2013
Pages: 2811-2818
ISBN: 978-84-616-2661-8
ISSN: 2340-1079
Conference name: 7th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 4-5 March, 2013
Location: Valencia, Spain
This paper uses the definition of violence developed by a World Health Organisation (WHO) group in 1996. “The intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, against oneself, another person, or against a group or community that either results in or has a high likelihood of resulting in injury, death, psychological harm, maldevelopment or deprivation”

Violence can be divided into three broad categories (Krug and others 2002a):
- self-inflicted: suicidal behaviour and self abuse
- interpersonal: family/partner (child/partner/elder) and community (acquaintance/stranger)
- collective : social, political and economic.

About 4400 people die everyday because of intentional acts of self-directed interpersonal or collective violence (Krug and others 2002a). Many thousands more are injured or suffer consequences as a result of being the victim or the witness to acts of violence. Additionally, ten of thousands of lives are destroyed, families shattered, and huge costs are incurred in treating victims, supporting families, repairing infrastructure, prosecuting perpetrators, or as a results of lost productivity and investment.

This paper, undertaken within the framework of a European Project, in the Leonardo Da Vinci programme, named ‘Giving hope to victims of abuse through vocational guidance’, has as its objective, to highlight the high financial cost suffered by the economy in general and in particular at the micro level, the victims and those already cited, as a consequence of acts of violence.

In order to define the term ‘violence’, in the HOPE Project we have only taken into account interpersonal and collective abuse. With respect to this paper, owing to the large volume of literature on the causes and financial consequences of abuse, we focus solely on domestic violence perpetrated against women.

The United Nations Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women (United Nations General Assembly 1993) defines violence against women as “any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivations of liberty, whether occurring in public or private life.”

Violence is a widespread and growing problem in almost all societies. It takes on many forms and appears in all environments: in work, the home, the street and in the community as a whole. It affects men as well as women of all ages, but above all young people. Nevertheless, there are important differences between women and men in that which refers to the manner, nature and consequences of violence.

A great proportion of violence is carried out by men, without regard to the sex and age of the victims. According to Garcia-Moreno (1999) the most important aspect is the fact that violence suffered by women and girls can be attributed to men they know and takes place behind the so-called ‘safe door’ of home and family.

The response given by society to the different forms of violence also varies. In the same way that everyone unanimously considers street violence to be a crime and believes the intervention of the State to be legitimate, many governments hesitate when it involves acting and even legislating against domestic violence. As it takes place in what is often considered to be the ‘private sphere’ of the home, violence is difficult to prove and prevent and easy to ignore.
Abuse, guidance, victims, economic perspective, domestic violence.