Impact story

Investigating Domestic Violence Law in Cambodia


Photo: Commune poster building awareness about domestic violence in Cambodia. Photo credit: © Katherine Brickell 2019.

Legislation seeking to address violence against women has grown in recent years – at least 144 countries now have laws on domestic violence (DV). However, many women are still prevented or deterred from accessing justice. The ESRC-DFID Joint Fund for Poverty Alleviation Research on DV law in Cambodia not only contributed to greater understanding of the limitations of the legislation but was used as evidence in a law court. The Principal Investigator (PI) acting as expert witness was a significant factor in preventing a domestic abuse survivor living in the United States from deportation to Cambodia where she feared being harmed. The research provided the grounds for relief from deportation through the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (UNCAT).

Focus projects: 

Domestic violence (DV) is a one of the starkest collective failures of the international community in the 21st century. Although a growing number of laws have been passed to protect women, governments from around the world have struggled to convert promises into prevention.

This timely study concentrates on the 2005 'Law on the Prevention of Domestic Violence and the Protection of the Victims' in Cambodia.