The Butterflies Effect: Emotional intelligence, domestic abuse and police decision-making

Research Institution / Organisation

University of Worcester

In Collaboration With

West Midlands Police, Warwickshire & West Mercia Police, Northamptonshire Police and Leicestershire Police

Principal Researcher

Anne Eason

Level of Research


Project Start Date

September 2016

Research Context

​In 2015 a pilot study was undertaken with police officers in regard to the completion of the DASH. From this study it became apparent that some of the officers identified emotional intelligence as a skill they used when completing the DASH or making decisions in relation to it.

The aim of this research is to explore this further in terms of risk assessment decisions when attending a domestic abuse incident, what the benefits of it are in relation to the protection of victims and officers' opinions of how best emotional intelligence could be developed in individual officers.

Research Methodology

​Four police forces are involved. The first part of the study is in the interviewing of officers across all four areas in three themes; their understanding and use of emotional intelligence at domestic abuse incidents, how or if it contributes to risk assessment decisions in terms of the DASH form and positive action and ideas for how or if it should be developed. This will then inform an online questionnaire which will be sent out to all officers of all areas.

Interim reports and publications

Date due for completion

October 2019
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