Journal of Educational Change

, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 349–370 | Cite as

Improving anti-bullying initiatives: The role of an expanded research agenda

  • Sigrun K. ErtesvågEmail author


Bullying is one of the most challenging issues facing students and schools worldwide. The disastrous consequences for victims and offenders are experienced daily by teachers and students and documented by numerous studies. The demand for evidence-based practice (EBP) in schools’ anti-bullying work has increased in the last decade, consequently evoking considerable debate. Traditionally, evaluations of EBP and evidence-based preventive programs have addressed the impact on outcomes that are measured according to a hierarchy of evidence. The question of “What works?” is only one question among many that are relevant to policy makers and practitioners. The author suggests broadening the approaches to evaluation by developing a knowledge base grounded in research methods and strategies that give voice to the participants as well as provide sound empirical evidence of causal relationships. Research on anti-bullying interventions provides insight into the debate surrounding EBP in general.


Evidence-based practice Evidence-based preventive programmes School-based intervention Hierarchy of evidence Anti-byllying program Bullying prevention 



This paper is partly funded by grants from The Research Council of Norway, Project number 209223/V11. The author is grateful for the support.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Norwegian Centre for Learning Environment and Behavioural Research in EducationUniversity of StavangerStavangerNorway

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