Ana Rodriguez, PhD Student

GHES U.S. Fellow 2018-2019

FELLOWSHIP SITE: Universidad de los Andes, Bogota, Colombia
U.S. INSTITUTION: Florida International University

Project Title: Intimate Partner Violence and Sexual Health among adolescents and young adults: A Social Network Analysis

This project seeks to investigate the interplay and relationships between Social Networks, Sexual Health and Gender Based Violence, among adolescents in the rural community of Santana, Colombia. Using mixed methods (qualitative and quantitative) and Complexity Science (social network analysis), this research project assumes a systems perspective in order to identify social, developmental and epidemiological structures, that activate the social spread of unhealthy and violent behaviors and practices between individuals and in the context of their cultural niche.  Mapping the critical characteristics of the dynamics of these health conditions, will allow to increase the understandings of the existing evidence-based knowledge on these global concerns, and therefore provide recommendations for future research, methodological approaches, clinical practice and interventions. 

The objectives are as follows: 1. Study the distribution and incidence of the predictors and outcomes of GBV and sexual risk-taking among adolescents in Santana, using a multilayer Social Network Analysis (SNA) approach. Further, this proposal highlights the relevance of assuming GBV with a systemic, longitudinal and multilevel perspective that will be approached using a community based methodology. Recommendations both for prevention and future research directions will be provided; 2.   Identify socio-structural and epidemiological dynamics of GBV and sexual risk-taking within the target population and map critical characteristics of the spread of both the GBV victimization and its related health outcomes. This will be done both with SNA and qualitative tools such as: contagious structures in multiplex networks, focus groups and clinical data; .3. Provide public policy, research and clinical recommendations for the design of interventions to prevent and treat GBV, HIV and other. This study will increase understandings of individuals’ social positions’ impact their experiences, sexual risks and health outcomes as a (potential) victim of GBV, and widen the levels of analysis of the existing evidence-based recommendations on these global phenomena.