Recent studies have tried to evaluate the relative burden of public expenditure and the costs borne by women experiencing gender violence. Calculating the costs of violence against women is not an easy task, as different studies use different methods of estimation, focus on different types of violence and count various types of costs. For this reason, few studies offer a detailed breakdown of the exact costs that can be attributed to violence against women. In 2013 we participated in the research ‘Quanto costa il silenzio?’ (‘What is the cost of silence?’) published by the Italian NGO Intervita (now We World). Data for the study was obtained from La Violenza Contro le Donne (ISTAT, 2006), a review of violence against women in Italy based on a survey of 25.000 women of between 16 and 70 years of age who have suffered intimate partner and non-partner violence, and the survey data was supplemented by nine semi-structured interviews. Drawing on the methodology we developed, we aim at a presenting a short summary of the key findings, analysing and assess different methodological options with a wider public, and discuss how awareness of the socio-economic impact of violence against women can inform government policies or programmes.
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