Fragments of the Past: Curating Peer Support with Perpetrators of Domestic Violence

07/09/2021
by   Rosanna Bellini, et al.
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There is growing evidence that digital peer-support networks can have a positive influence on behaviour change and wellbeing outcomes for people who harm themselves and others. However, making and sustaining such networks are subject to ethical and pragmatic challenges, particularly for perpetrators of domestic violence whom pose unique risks when brought together. In this work we report on a ten-month study where we worked with six support workers and eighteen perpetrators in the design and deployment of Fragments of the Past; a socio-material system that connects audio messages with tangible artefacts. We share how crafting digitally-augmented artefacts - 'fragments' - of experiences of desisting from violence can translate messages for motivation and rapport between peers, without subjecting the process to risks inherent with direct inter-personal communication. These insights provide the basis for practical considerations for future network design with challenging populations.

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