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SISER Projects and Publications

We are developing an evidence base on "What Works" and working with commissioners and professionals to value the important work that they do to further our understanding of pertinent issues facing society. As a research institute, sharing our research, practice and learning is at the heart of what we do. 

For further information on our projects and to download research reports, click the links below.

Domestic Abuse Projects

Completed projects

An evaluation of the Venta programme: a project aimed at men who have abused or are likely to abuse women

PI: Dr Olumide Adisa

This report examines the impact of the programme work with male clients who are male perpetrators abusing female partners/ex-partners, based on the referrals received into Venta in 2018. It analyses the data in relation to referrals and men’s engagement with the Venta programme in 2018. Venta at ICENI, based in Ipswich, Suffolk involved a pilot intervention with low, medium and high-risk male perpetrators of domestic abuse (DA) who have abused or are likely to abuse their female partners/ex-partners in Suffolk. Each group ran for 16 weeks with a 2.5-hour session held every week and a 4-hour session on a Saturday at the beginning. The programme also includes two 1-hour initial assessment sessions. Venta offers a space for exploration, understanding, learning and growing. A total of 108 stakeholders, including offenders, practitioners and other agencies, were consulted using questionnaires, focus groups, and interviews.  

The project undertook two pilots with 24 men (who happened to be mostly White British) and validated pre- and post- outcome questionnaires were collected from 12 completers across both cohorts. 

Venta has been purposely designed to work with men who have abused women and are likely to behave in a violent, abusive, coercive or controlling way within intimate relationships with women. Participation is free and voluntary. The key aim of the project is to help men work towards understanding and changing that behaviour. Evidence on changes in behaviour for the completers has been presented in the report.  

Data for the evaluation was collected using the following methods: 

  1. Questionnaires used with clients about their demographic profile, their history of violence and abuse, any criminal involvement, and self-report of health and well-being, with data taken at intake and at exit 
  1. Focus groups with Venta’s male clients 
  1. Stakeholder focus groups with Venta facilitators and other ICENI staff and directors.  
  1. Interviews with the two key staff members implementing the project 
  1. Two case studies of male clients 
  1. Online survey of professionals’ perceptions of the programme and its value. 

For access to full report,


A mixed methods evaluation of a bespoke money advice service to support domestic abuse victims/survivors

PI: Dr Olumide Adisa

The aim of this outcome evaluation was to examine the effectiveness of a bespoke Money Advice Service (MAS) in achieving financial capability outcomes to support domestic abuse survivors, as provided by Anglia Care Trust (ACT). This report describes the work undertaken by the MAS and the key findings of the evaluation. The evaluation was funded through the What Works Fund.

The research has been disseminated through a unique knowledge exchange event, hosted by the University. Additionally, the research has been featured on the ‘UK Financial Capability Strategy’s website Blog which helped raise awareness of economic abuse and led to some media interest. The research findings will be permanently deposited in the What Works Fund Evidence Hub and will be widely accessible to the public. The research will be published in an academic journal.

For access to the full report, 

PDF iconA003 MAS ACT Financial Capabiliy Evaluation Report.pdf


Online Abuse and Safeguarding Projects

Completed projects

Digital Civility: Creating a community of online safety on campus

Principle Investigators: Professor Emma Bond, Professor Andy Phippen & Katie Tyrrell

The Digital Civility project at the University of Suffolk is an innovative initiative that received funding through the HEFCE Catalyst fund. The University aims to increase digital civility, improve the online safety of students in relation to online abuse, harassment, and hate crime over the coming year, with the support of the University of Suffolk Student Union, Student Services and Suffolk Institute for Social and Economic Research. 

Download our


  • Over the year 2017/2018, the university provided and promoted various educational materials, media campaigns, workshops and seminars on several aspects of online risk, such as indecent images and revenge pornography, devised and led by experts in the field.
  • It is envisaged that adopting a whole university and community-led approach, as well as identifying ‘what works’ for our students, should enable a substantial improvement in student digital safety and wellbeing.

In addition to the Blurring Boundaries and Virtual Violence conferences, consisting of workshops and talks from various experts within the field of online safeguarding, we have held training workshops and seminars for both staff and students. These include responding to disclosures of online sexual abuse and reporting and removing indecent images online. Furthermore, discussion groups as well as awareness raising materials and educational resources have and will continue to be employed across the campus, the VLE and social media.

For more information on the project see: Safeguarding Students in Higher Education 

Online Peer on Peer Abuse: A National Survey of Teachers and Safeguarding Leads in England and Scotland.

Principle Investigators: Professor Emma Bond, Professor Andy Phippen & Katie Tyrrell

PDF iconMCF-Peer-on-peer-Abuse-Research-Report-Final 2018.pdf

Violence against Women and Girls Online: Amnesty International

Principal Investigators: Katie Tyrrell and Azmina Dhrodia (Amnesty International)

Working alongside Amnesty International researchers, focus groups with young female students within college and university were conducted to investigate experiences of gender-based violence online. Findings indicate diverse use of social media platforms across participants with unwanted contact, harassment and bullying online featuring, either through personal or indirect experience via friends and family. Findings will inform international campaigns and movement within Amnesty International to address the responsibilities of large social media companies such as Twitter.

National Citizen Service - Young people's perceptions of online safety educational programmes

Principle Investigators: Vanessa Rawlings and Katie Tyrrell

Youth Interventions - Crime and Social Justice

Diversion Programme

This project provides insight into the impact of youth justice interventions, which endorse rehabilitation and restoration as opposed to formal sanctions against juvenile offenders. Using a mixed-methods approach the project highlights the importance of holistic, person-centred approaches and a multi-agency joint decision making process within youth justice interventions. The evaluation will inform future developments and the sustainability of the programme within Suffolk, as well as potentially informing national practice. 

Principal Investigators: Katie Tyrrell, Mark Manning, and Cristian Dogaru 

For access to the full report click here: 

PDF iconDiversion Evalution Report 2017.pdf

Voluntary Sector Research

Completed projects

Public Perceptions of the VCSE sector in Suffolk, in partnership with Community Action Suffolk 

Principal Investigator: Dr Olumide Adisa

Assessing the confidence levels of charity managers (risk, governance, and compliance to regulations)

Principal Investigator: Dr Olumide Adisa

Community Justice

Completed projects

Access to Justice: Assessing the impact of the Magistrates’ Court Closures in Suffolk

In March 2017, following significant public interest in the recent court closures in Suffolk, the University of Suffolk was commissioned to investigate the impact of the magistrates’ court closures on those most affected, particularly on those having to travel long distances. The research, undertaken by Dr Olumide Adisa, was conducted between March 2017 and May 2017, the research period was extended to November 2017 to allow additional time to include court data from Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS).

The study used a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods to answer a set of broad research questions. Verified quantitative local court data drawn locally and centrally from HMCTS was used to provide information on the impact of the court closures. The research conducted interviews and focus groups with key stakeholders who represent the interests of various court users including members of the judiciary, Suffolk Constabulary, Probation and Suffolk County Council.

The dissemination of the research is ongoing and as such, the wider research impact is emerging. Nonetheless, it has garnered media interest, particularly in light of continuing court closures in rural locations in East Anglia and further field. The research will be published in an academic journal.

Principal Investigator: Dr Olumide Adisa

Physical activity and wellbeing

The aim of this project is to identify the impact of various sporting and physical activities upon the wellbeing and activity levels of individuals across younger (11-25 years) and older (50-80 years) generations in Suffolk using a mixed methods approach. The outcomes can also enable an evaluation of the feasibility of replication and increasing the scale of activities to contribute toward an increasingly active county. The project outcomes will add to the increasing academic evidence base for the impact of physical activities upon mental health and wellbeing, particularly in relation to periods of transition. The findings will evidence for the effectiveness of activities based on participants perspectives, and if positive will lead to increased  physical activity provision within the wider community. The project is featured within the Centre for Health and Wellbeing, and is an integral part of the universities continued engagement in local community-based research.

Principal Investigators: Katie Tyrrell and Vanessa Rawlings

For access to the full report click here: 

PDF iconWell-being and Physical Activity Report 2018.pdf

Partners and Testimonials

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Suffolk Research Blog

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