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Manuel Eisner - From Universal Mechanisms to Evidence-Based Violence Reduction

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Published on Nov 10, 2014

SPEAKER
Manuel Eisner
Deputy Director of the Institute of Criminology and Director of the Violence Research Centre at the University of Cambridge

TITLE
Reducing Homicide by 50% in 30 Years: Universal Mechanisms and Evidence- Based Public Policy

ABSTRACT
Homicide is probably the only type of violence where the quality of indicators is good enough to define targets and to monitor progress at a global, national and regional level. Evidence from many places in the world suggests that reductions by about 2.5% per year – needed for a 50% drop in 30 years - are feasible and realistic. A public policy framework for achieving such a goal needs to overcome the traditional cleavage between the more micro-level evidence typically produced by randomized trials and the macro-level evidence of what drives population-level differences. I will suggest three universal mechanisms that have been involved in any major homicide decline and that can guide policies aimed at reducing homicide: Better governance and the rule of law; the promotion of self-control and discipline; and cultural change towards higher civility. These stipulated universal mechanisms must be translated into actual prevention strategies.

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This lecture was organised as part of the WHO and University of Cambridge Global Violence Reduction Conference 2014. We are grateful to the UBS Optimus Foundation for making this conference possible with their generous support.
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