Changes in Collective Efficacy’s Preventive Effect on Intimate Partner Violence during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Toshihiko Souma, Kentaro Komura, Takashi Arai, Takahito Shimada, Yuji Kanemasa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Following the logic of studies showing that collective efficacy within neighborhoods deters intimate partner violence (IPV), the promotion of social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic may have weakened that effect. To examine that possibility, we analyzed panel data from 318 adults in Japan regarding IPV victimization and perceived collective efficacy at four time points. A latent growth model (LGM) analysis for each measure revealed that informal social control, a subscale of collective efficacy, has declined since the pandemic began, whereas no significant changes have occurred in social cohesion and trust, another subscale of collective efficacy, and IPV victimization. Furthermore, two parallel LGM analyses revealed that although collective efficacy before the pandemic suppressed subsequent IPV victimization, changes in collective efficacy during the pandemic have been positively associated with changes in IPV. Those results suggest that collective efficacy’s protective effect on IPV is moderated by whether interactions between intimate partners and their neighbors are socially normative.

Original languageEnglish
Article number12849
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Oct


  • collective efficacy
  • COVID-19
  • intimate partner violence
  • parallel latent growth model
  • social distancing


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