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Celebrating 10 years of CRiVA: Janelle Rabe

The Centre for Research into Violence and Abuse (CRiVA) was launched in 2013 and has since been designing and enhancing research-led education, policy and practice in the field of violence and abuse.

Janelle Rabe was first introduced to CRiVA by her supervisors during her PhD at the Department of Sociology.

Read on to find out more about Janelle, her role and passion and why CRiVA is so important.

Janelle Rabe, CRiVA member
Janelle Rabe, CRiVA member
Tell us about your role within CRiVA

I am one of the Postgraduate Researcher (PGR) coordinators of CRiVA. My area of interest is addressing sexual violence against children and young people using participatory, collaborative, and creative approaches.

How did you become involved with the work in the Centre?

I joined CRiVA because my research addresses violence and abuse. When I was applying for my PhD with my supervisors Professor Simon Hackett, Professor Geetanjali Gangoli and Dr Hannah King, I was immediately enthused by the work of CRiVA which is impact-oriented with their work influencing policy and practice. This fit well into my career path having worked in policy advocacy in the Philippines previously wherein my research has been used in policy campaigns such as raising the age of sexual consent from 12 years old to 16 years old.

Why are you so passionate about the Centre and the work they do?

CRiVA members are leading experts doing pioneering and transformative research on various connected issues on violence and abuse that is renowned locally and internationally. One of the aims of the Centre is to influence changes in policy and practice. They also initiate, change, or facilitate conversations about current events related to gender, violence, and abuse to ensure that these are grounded in evidence and lived experiences instead of being sensationalised by traditional media and social media.

How does your work impact communities / the world around you?

My ongoing participatory research with young people (13-18 years old) in Northeast England demonstrate the potential and significance of providing safe spaces for young people to take the lead in discussions with me as a researcher and their peers on sensitive issues such as sexual violence. Emerging findings of my project include co-produced and young people-led models on their understandings of sexual violence and related issues as well as their recommendations in improving schools’ responses to sexual violence. Their feedback in our series of participatory workshops consistently shown how they felt supported, understood, and safe, which to me is the most meaningful impact a project can have when working with young people.

What opportunities did you have working as part of CRiVA?

Joining CRiVA as a PGR has opened doors for me to participate with a supportive group of academics and fellow PGRs in international conferences such as the European Criminological Society Conference in Malaga, Spain in 2022 and the European Conference on Domestic Violence (ECDV) in Reykjavik, Iceland in 2023. CRiVA members provide emotional and practical support that boosts the confidence of PGRs to present our research in these conferences. I was overwhelmed and beyond grateful for the support of CRiVA members when I won the best poster presentation at ECDV. CRiVA academics are incredibly generous and encouraging, breaking the traditional hierarchies between academics and PGR students like our weekly CRiVA coffee chats. These make us feel at ease to seek advice even if they are not our supervisors which ultimately enriches the quality of our work and contributes to our growth as researchers.

Find out more

  • Janelle Rabe is a Postgraduate Researcher (PGR) in the Department of Sociology. Visit her profile
  • The Centre for Research into Violence and Abuse (CRiVA) is dedicated to improving knowledge about interpersonal violence and abuse, and professional and societal responses to it. Find out more
  • CRiVA’s research has received international acclaim and led to ‘world leading’ and ‘internationally excellent’ impact ratings. Discover more
  • Our Department of Sociology is ranked 1st in the UK for Criminology and 3rd in the UK for Sociology in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024. Feeling inspired? Visit our Sociology webpages to learn more about studying with us.
  • If you’d like to share your story or insights into your work, visit our Submit a blog or vlog page to learn more.