Adolescent Social Networks and Physical Intimate Partner Violence Among Colombian Rural Adolescents

Ana Lucia Rodríguez de la Rosa, Dionne Stephens, Felipe Montes, Olga L. Sarmiento, Eduardo L. De la Vega-Taboada, Asia Eaton, Nadja Schreiber Compo, Purnima Madhivanan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The current study analyzes individual and social network correlates of adolescent engagement in physical intimate partner violence (IPV) utilizing socio-centric data from a high-school population of 242 adolescents from rural Colombia. We studied self-reported victimization and perpetration for boys and girls. First, we used logistic regression to explore the relationship between adolescents’ IPV engagement and school peers’ IPV engagement, school violence victimization, and social network position, controlling for gender and age (N = 111). Second, we used social network statistical methods to investigate if there were more friendships of similar IPV status to the adolescent than expected by chance in their social networks. Our results show that the proportion of friends perpetrating physical IPV increased the probability of adolescents’ IPV perpetration. Contrarywise, the proportion of friends experiencing IPV victimization decreased with the adolescent’s own victimization. Being a victim (a status significantly more common among boys) was also associated with reporting perpetration for both genders. Furthermore, our results contradicted the social network literature, as we found no preferential ties among perpetrators/victims (e.g. adolescents do not seem to befriend each other by IPV engagement). Our study is unique to the global adolescent IPV literature given the scarcity of research examining physical IPV among adolescents in the context of both girls and boys in the context of their school networks. We also add to the understanding of IPV in the case of the global majority of adolescents with the highest rates of IPV victimization (living in low and middle-income countries).

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Aggression, Maltreatment and Trauma
StateAccepted/In press - 2023


  • Adolescent intimate partner victimization
  • adolescent violence perpetration
  • intimate partner violence
  • physical dating violence
  • physical teen violence
  • school social networks

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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