If it IS Broke, Why Not Fix It?
    Fecha: 15/05/2017
    Hora: 12:00 PM a 2:00 PM
    Universidad de los Andes
    Salón G-101 - Carrera 1 No. 18 A 12

    Intimate partner violence (IPV) is highly prevalent with serious consequences for individuals, couples and children. Unfortunately, interventions designed to prevent future IPV among perpetrators have had little success. Most of these interventions comprise a blend of patriarchal theory and/or cognitive-behavior theory approaches and, in general, focus on modifying how IPV perpetrators think and act through cognitive restructuring, skills training, and anger management techniques.

    Despite their widespread use and legal support, there is overwhelming and consistent empirical evidence that these interventions do not yield significant or clinically meaningful reductions in IPV. My talk will begin with an overview of ACTV, a novel IPV intervention. Interventions emphasizing this new approach have yielded impressive outcomes for a broad range of problems, but this was the first intervention to apply these processes to IPV. Additionally, this is also the first intervention to target the reasons why violence continues rather than why it is initiated. Outcome data from two RCTs will also be presented.


    Erika Lawrence is a tenured professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Arizona. She received her PhD in clinical psychology at UCLA and worked as a Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Iowa for 15 years before moving to Tucson, AZ in 2015. She has been conducting interventions with and assessing the effectiveness of interventions for domestic violence offenders, victims and children, and families since the early 1990s. Over the past decade, she worked closely with the Iowa Department of Corrections including the probation and parole officers, DOC employees, judges and victim advocates to overhaul their court-mandated curriculum for men sentenced to complete a Batterers Education Program (BEP) for a domestic violence conviction. She has trained hundreds of facilitators and co-led countless groups. Her research demonstrating the effectiveness of her new curriculum (known as ACTV) has been adopted as the only BEP curriculum offered in the state of Iowa and has being implemented in several other states. The Pew Center has listed it as the only BEP that they recommend states adopt based on its effectiveness at reducing domestic violence and its cost-effectiveness. She is currently hoping to be able to work with agencies in AZ to reduce domestic violence here.
    Her work in this area has been funded by the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Office of Violence against Women, the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the National Institute for Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). It has been featured nationally, most recently on NPR Marketplace as an example of a cost-effective state-run curriculum for court-mandated interventions. She has served on the National Partnership to End Interpersonal Violence Consortium since its inception, is the former President of the American Psychological Association’s (APA) Division of Couple and Family Psychology and the former Co-President of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies’ (ABCT) Couples Research and Therapy division.

    Erika Lawrence PhD in clinical psychology at UCLA

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