Since 2003, Praxis has been providing training and technical assistance (TA) to communities funded by the U.S. Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women to analyze institutional responses to violence against women through the use of institutional analysis, community assessment, best practice assessment and Safety and Accountability Audits.
A primary focus of the Violence Against Women Act has been to change the social conditions that give rise to violence against women by altering traditional, often harmful, practices of institutions which either contribute to or ignore this violence. As such, OVW grantees are all engaged on some level in analyzing and altering institutional practices that fail to protect victims.
Praxis offers methods for institutional analysis and systems change work rooted in the field of sociology called institutional ethnography. Our tools provide ways for activists and representatives from institutions that process “cases” to move toward approaches that alter the ongoing case processing routines that ultimately shape case outcomes. The tools avoid pointing fingers of blame at individuals for failing to protect victims. Practitioners and advocates work side by side to analyze how systems organize the day-to-day routines of individual practitioners to either centralize or marginalize attention to victim safety.Show More
The following tools developed by Praxis reveal systemic problems and produce recommendations for institutional change:
The goal of this technical assistance project and our general consulting services is to develop the ability of communities to improve institutional responses to “cases” of violence against women. The Praxis methods of institutional analysis/community assessment have been used to examine the responses to domestic violence and sexual assault in the following areas:
Beyond technical assistance to grantees under the Office on Violence Against Women, the Center for the Study of Social Policy has adapted the Praxis method of institutional analysis to examining disparity in foster care placements for African American children.
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