Research focused on the mechanisms through which sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) is perpetrated, entrenched, and reproduced within complex ecological systems is an important new direction in the field of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) prevention. The determinants of SGBV interact and accumulate across the lifespan at multiple levels, including at the individual, family, community, and societal levels. An individual’s social network is one way in which the levels of the ecological model interact. Social network research has been vital to understanding the formation and transmission of attitudes and behaviors across a vast set of health outcomes, while also informing promising interventions. SGBV is widespread among youth in Jordan, as are attitudes that support gender inequity. While attitudes are often first established, normalized, and entrenched within the home, childhood beliefs are reaffirmed and challenged by new social interactions as youth begin to develop their own social networks. Better understanding how these social interactions influence attitudes related to gender and SGBV among youth in Jordan may be instrumental in designing interventions that promote social transformation. Our study aims to understand how attitudes and behaviors related to SGBV and gender inequity among youth in Jordan are developed and transmitted across social networks in Jordan at different levels of the social ecological system in order to develop evidence-based intervention strategies.
We aim to 1) Describe how social networks relate to SGBV and gender equity, 2) Examine the mechanisms through which attitudes related to SGBV and gender equity are transmitted across networks, 3) Disentangle the relative effect of social context on attitudes related to SGBV and gender equity, and 4) Promote evidence-based recommendations for research replication and SGBV network interventions.