Original Article

Journal of Family Violence

, Volume 25, Issue 2, pp 173-181

First online:

Examining an Extension of Johnson’s Hypothesis: Is Male Perpetrated Intimate Partner Violence More Underreported than Female Violence?

Item Non-Response in the Project on Human Development in Chicago Neighborhoods
  • Clifton R. EmeryAffiliated withGeorge Warren Brown School of Social Work, Washington University Email author 

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This paper examines two hypotheses about under-reporting in intimate partner violence data. The first hypothesis holds that significant amounts of under-reporting of intimate partner violence occur due to stigma. The second examines the empirical evidence behind Johnson’s (Journal of Marriage and the Family 57:238–294, 1995) contention that controversial findings of equal rates of intimate partner violence perpetration among men and women occur through a combination of heterogeneity in type of intimate partner violence and missing data. E.M. and Data Augmentation are used to correct for item non-response in the Project on Human Development in Chicago Neighborhoods. Strong support is found for general under-reporting; weak support is found for greater under-reporting of male violence.


Intimate partner violence Domestic violence Missing data Multiple imputation