An inclusive research community for Wales that provides a safe, open forum to bring together those who are working towards an end to VAWDASV to set the future research agenda, foster collaboration and develop grant applications, undertake high quality research, and work towards the elimination of VAWDASV. 


  • Determine/understand the research and practice priorities for Wales.
  • Identify gaps in VAWDASV research.
  • Share knowledge and expertise (including knowledge exchange).
  • ‘Test’ research ideas and gauge interest in collaboration.
  • Identify and respond to research council grant and commercial grant calls.
  • Co-produce research grant applications.
  • Develop future partnership working across the UK and internationally.
  • Annually report on progress against objectives.

Guiding Principles:

We recognise that sometimes the work of the network may trigger difficult responses, for network members and research participants, or may elicit disclosures.  It is important that we are clear on what we are safely able to do and that we do not offer advice or therapeutic interventions that we are not qualified to give.  If someone needs support or discloses, we will refer them to the Live Fear Free helpline, who will be able to direct them to appropriate services. When engaging with survivors, we follow the advice given in the Welsh Women’s Aid Survivor Engagement Toolkit and the Research Integrity Framework. When organising public events, we will ensure that there is a named safeguarding person, ideally from a specialist service, access to a quiet space, and a phone line. 

  • Develop a core working group to support the development of the VAWDASV research network for Wales.
  • Align activities with the policy landscape of Wales, e.g., the landmark Violence Against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence Act (Wales) Act 2015, The Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014, and The Well-Being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015.
  • Consider the work and activities of the research network within the context of UK legislation e.g. The Domestic Abuse Act, 2021 and other associated legislation in the UK, and international guidance e.g., WHO.
  • Ensure that the research network is accessible and inclusive.
  • To ensure that survivors are at the heart of the work from the planning stages through to evaluation.
  • Adhere to the Research Integrity Framework (RIF) on Domestic Violence and Abuse (2020). The RIF identifies good practice in terms of ethical research in DVA addressing principles based on five pillars: Safety and well-being; Transparency/accountability; Equality, human rights and social justice; Engagement; Research ethics (S.T.E.E.R).
  • Adhere to guidance outlined in Welsh Woman’s Aid’s Survivor Engagement Toolkit.

Terms of Reference

Role and function:

The VAWDASV research network Wales is a unique opportunity to bring together a wealth of experience, expertise, knowledge and skills to develop and deliver high quality research. Core group and network members will have specific interests and specialities within the area of VAWDASV. Inclusivity and respect are central to the VAWDASV research network.

Role and responsibilities of the core working group:

To support the development and ongoing work of the VAWDASV Research Network Wales.

Key tasks include:

  • Refining the network (objectives, reach, functions, and activities).
  • Setting the VAWDASV research priorities for Wales.
  • Website development, network branding, communications.
  • Knowledge exchange – for example, translating the work of the research to practice, policy, further research, education etc. This might include but is not limited to workshops, conferences, briefings, journal articles.
  • Expanding and maintaining external networks – for example, service providers, academics, survivors/PPI, policy and other stakeholders.
  • Overseeing the development of the network, ensuring that it expands responsibly and in line with the aims and objectives.
  • To oversee research grants when they are awarded e.g., reporting to the network on both income generation and impact of the research.

Core working group membership:

The core working group will be comprised of members of the wider research network and will be representative of the diversity of the network.

Meeting regularity:

  • Core group members will meet bi-monthly, with smaller working groups meeting as necessary on specific projects.
  • Whole network meetings take place quarterly.