Previous research finds that individuals in a wide variety of countries worldwide are increasingly likely to reject intimate partner violence. Socioeconomic and demographic predictors, while important, fail to explain the majority of this attitudinal shift. We contend that foreign aid projects aimed specifically at reducing intimate partner violence have played a key role in diffusing global cultural scripts advocating against such violence and are responsible for much of the observed global attitudinal shift. Drawing upon cross-national survey data and new data on foreign aid projects by project goal, we employ multilevel models to test the influence of such projects on individuals’ attitudes and the overall time trend. We also test counterfactual national-level variables related to functional or modernization theories of attitudinal change. Our preliminary results show that foreign aid projects targeted at reducing intimate partner violence had a substantial effect on this recent ideational shift, net of structural forces.
Presented in Session 4. Marriage, Family, Households, & Unions