MORGANTOWN, W.Va. Violence is a serious public health problem in the United States. From infants to the elderly, it affects people in all stages of life. In 2010, more than 16,250 people were victims of homicide and more than 38,360 took their own life.
In order to learn more about violence and limit its effects, The Department of Sociology and Anthropology at West Virginia University will launch the Center for Research on Violence for the fall semester.
The Center will earn grants to work on government and nonprofit projects, host colloquia with leading speakers on violence, reach and interact with the West Virginia and national communities, and will play a key role in attracting Ph.D. students from across the world.
Currently composed of six WVU sociology and anthropology staff members, the Center will examine violence broadly defined, from interpersonal violence, such as robbery or rape, to crimes against the environment.
Walter DeKeseredy, Ph.D., will serve as the director of the Center. Well established in his field, he has published 19 books and more than 140 peer-review journal articles and book chapters and has received large-scale U.S. and Canadian federal grants.
He is routinely asked to serve as a consultant to the U.S. Justice Department, the Centers for Disease Control, and has served with the LaMarsh Research Center on Violence and Conflict Resolution at York University in Toronto, Canada.
“This will be an excellent resource for people interested in violence research. We have 27 research associates who are leading experts from around the world. These assistants are not paid WVU faculty members, but want to belong to the Center to do collaborative work. The fact that we have people who want their name associated with us means we are already on our way to making a global impact,” DeKeseredy said.
The Center will soon expand to become more interdisciplinary, including members from public health, medicine and psychology.
“Our plan is to grow in size and create a much larger center, making the center one of, not just West Virginia’s, but the World’s leading centers on violence,” Dekeseredy said.
A website for the center is currently in the making. It will include a list of executives in the Center, profiles of researchers, events and links to other sites related to violence research.
For more information, contact Walter DeKeseredy at walter.deKeseredy@mail.wvu.edu.