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Recent and Selected Publications


Dawson, M. (Ed.) (2017) Domestic Homicides and Death Reviews: An International Perspective. Palgrave.

Domestic Homicides and Death Reviews Book Cover.

This edited collection highlights international research on domestic homicides and death reviews which are a rapidly growing intervention/prevention initiative in various countries. Chapters focus on: the impetus for the international development of such initiatives, the identification of risk factors and recommendations for improving systemic responses, the uptake and impact of these recommendations and, finally, the social and public policy implications of outcomes for developed and developing countries. Despite rapid growth, the current state of research and knowledge about domestic violence death review initiatives is limited, fragmented, and primarily descriptive, largely comprising annual public reports. The authors of this book bridge this significant gap by analysing the wide range of models currently in development and operation. A bold and important examination, this work will have a powerful impact on policy makers and scholars of social science theory, women’s studies, and domestic violence.

Johnson, H and M. Dawson. (2011). Violence Against Women in Canada: Research and Policy Perspectives. Toronto: Oxford University Press.

Violence Against Women in Canada, Research and Policy Perspectives Book Cover.

Examining a wide range of theoretical perspectives, empirical research, and policy responses, Violence Against Women in Canada emphasizes connections among different forms of violence – connections that have too often been ignored or downplayed. Taking a gendered sociological approach, the text reveals how violence against women stems from unequal access to power and resources. While gender is the central focus, the authors also show how intersections of race, ethnicity, class, and sexuality serve to deepen inequalities for particular groups. Comprehensive and concise, this new text explores the evolution of methods to measure violence, the impact of these methods on the social framing of violence issues, the impact on victims, and current policy responses and their effectiveness.

Book Chapters

Dawson, M. and E. Hill. 2021. Understanding child-to-parent homicide in the Canadian Context. Chapter 4 in Young People Using Family Violence: International Perspectives on Research, Responses and Reforms, edited by K. Fitz-Gibbon, H. Douglas and J. Maher. Springer.

Dawson, M. 2021. Domestic homicide review processes as a method of learning. Chapter 43 in International Handbook of Domestic Violence and Abuse, edited by J. Devaney, C. Bradbury-Jones, R. J. Macy, C. Øverlien, and & S. Holt. London: Routledge.

Dawson, M. 2020. The Canadian Femicide Observatory for Justice and Accountability. Femicide XIII: Collecting Data on Femicide. Vienna: United Nations Studies Association.

Dawson, M. 2019. Recognizing the children left behind: Making invisible victims of femicide visible. Femicide XII: Silence to Death and Living Victims of Femicide. Vienna: United Nations Studies Association.

Dawson, M. 2018. The Canadian Femicide Observatory for Justice and Accountability. Chapter 6 in Contesting Femicide – Feminism and the Power of Law Revisited: Essays in Honour of Carol Smart, edited by A. Howe and D. Alaatinoglu. London: Routledge.

Dawson, M. 2018. Femicide in Canada: Accountability and Punishment. Pg. 14-23 in Femicide IX: Femicide, State Accountability and Punishment. Vienna: Academic Council of United Nations System.

Dawson, M. 2017. Patterns in femicides of older women in Ontario, Canada, 1974-2012. Pg. 16-23 in Femicide VIII: Abuse and Femicide of the Older Woman. Vienna: Academic Council of United Nations System.

Dawson, M. Intimacy, geography and justice. Chapter 15 in Reading Sociology (3rd Edition), edited by P. Albanese, L. Tepperman, and E. Alexander. Toronto: Oxford University Press.

Dawson, M. Homicide in Canada. 2017. Chapter 23 in the International Handbook on Homicide, edited by F. Brookman, E.R. Maguire and M. Maguire. West Sussex, UK: Wiley Publishers.

Dawson, M., P. Jaffe, M. Campbell, W. Lucas, and K. Kerr. 2017. Canada. Chapter 3 in Domestic Homicides and Death Reviews: An International Perspective, edited by M. Dawson. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Fairbairn, J., P. Jaffe, and M. Dawson. 2017. Challenges in defining domestic homicide: Implications for Research and Practice. Chapter 7 in Domestic Homicides and Death Reviews: An International Perspective, edited by M. Dawson. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Dawson, M., S. Mathews, N. Abrahams, and J. Campbell. 2017. Death reviews in the context of domestic homicide in low- to middle-income countries: South Africa as a case study. Chapter 13 in Domestic Homicides and Death Reviews: An International Perspective, edited by M. Dawson. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Dawson, M. Intimacy, gender and homicide: The validity and utility of common stereotypes in law. 2016. Chapter 3 in Gender, Murder and Responsibility: An International Perspective, edited by K. Fitz-Gibbons and S. Walklate (Routledge).

Dawson, M. & R. Dinovitzer. (2008) “The evolution of specialized domestic violence courts in Ontario,” in Chapter 5 in What’s Law Got to do with it? The Law, Specialized Courts and Domestic Violence in Canada, edited by J. Ursel and L. Tutty. Toronto: Cormorant Press.

Gartner, R. & M. Dawson. (2007) “Deviance & Crime” in New Society: Sociology for the 21st Century (5th Ed.), edited by R. J. Brym. Toronto: Harcourt Brace.

Journal Articles

Nourpanah, S. and M. Dawson. 2021. Whose knowledge is under the lens? A contribution to the debate sparked by Clark and Walker’s 2011 research ethics in victimization studies: Widening the lens. Violence Against Women [Accepted].

Dawson, M. and M. Carrigan. 2021. Identifying femicide locally and globally: Understanding the utility and accessibility of sex/gender-related motives and indicators. Current Sociology 69(5): 682-704.

Johnson, A. and M. Dawson. 2021. Child homicide in Ontario: Comparing characteristics of children killed by family members and strangers. Child Abuse Review.

Cullen, P., M. Dawson, J. Price, and J. Rowlands. 2021. Intersectionality and Invisible Victims: Reflections on Data Challenges in Femicide, Family and Intimate Partner Homicide Research. Journal of Family Violence 36: 619-628.

Youngson, N., M. Saxton, P. Jaffe, D. Chiodo, M. Dawson, and AL. Straatman. 2021. Challenges in Risk Assessment with Rural Domestic Violence Victims: Implications for Practice. Journal of Family Violence 36: 537-550.

Olszowy, L., P. Jaffe, M. Dawson, AL. Straatman, and M. Saxton. 2020. Ontario Child Protection Workers’ Views on Assessing Risk & Planning for Safety in Exposure to Domestic Violence Cases. Child & Family Social Work 26: 173-182.

Carrigan, M. and M. Dawson. 2020. Problem representations of Femicide/Feminicide legislation in Latin America. International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy 9(2): 1-19.

Reif, K., P. Jaffe, M. Dawson, and A-L. Straatman. 2020. Provision of Specialized Services for Children Exposed to Domestic Violence: Barriers Encountered in Violence Against Women (VAW) Services. Children and Youth Services Review 109: 1-10.

Whitehead, J., M. Dawson, and T. Hotton. 2020. Same-sex intimate partner violence in Canada: Prevalence, characteristics, and types of incidents reported to police services. Journal of Interpersonal Violence.

Saxton, M., P. Jaffe, M. Dawson, AL. Straatman and L. Olszowy. 2020. Complexities of the police response to intimate partner violence: Police officers’ perspectives on the challenges of keeping families safe.  Journal of Interpersonal Violence.

Olszowy, L., P. Jaffe, M. Dawson, AL. Straatman, and M. Saxton. 2020. Voices from the frontline: Child protection workers’ perspectives on barriers to assessing risk in domestic violence cases. Child and Youth Services Review 116: 1-9.

Saxton, M., P. Jaffe, M. Dawson, L. Olszowy and A-L Straatman. 2020. Barriers to police addressing risk to children exposed to domestic violence. Child Abuse & Neglect 106: 1-9.

Saxton, M.D., P.G. Jaffe, A. Straatman, L. Olszowy, and M. Dawson. 2020. Measuring intimate partner violence risk: A national survey of Canadian police officers. Journal of Community Safety & Wellbeing 5(3): 1-7.

Fairbairn, J., D. Sutton, M. Dawson and P. Jaffe. 2019. Putting definitions to work: Reflections from the Canadian Domestic Homicide Prevention Initiative with Vulnerable Populations. Sociological Studies of Children and Youth 25: 67-82.

Bader, D., M. Dawson, and D. Walters. 2019. Does gender affect the number and type of charges laid in intimate partner violence cases? The British Journal of Criminology 59(6): 1347-1369.

Sutton, D. and M. Dawson. 2018. Do the characteristics of domestic violent incidents differ depending on the type and length of the relationship that exists between the accused and victim? Journal of Interpersonal Violence 36 (9-10): 167-191.

Dawson, M. and A. Piscitelli. 2017. Risk factors in domestic homicides: Identifying common clusters in the Canadian context. Journal of Interpersonal Violence 

Dawson, M. and D. Sutton. 2017. Similar sentences, similar crimes? Using deep sample analysis to examine the comparability of crimes and punishments by victim-defendant relationship. International Journal of Crime, Law and Justice 49: 58-70

Dawson, M. 2016. Punishing femicide: Criminal justice responses to the killing of women over four decades. Current Sociology 64(7): 996-1016

Dawson, M. Canadian trends in filicide by gender of the accused, 1961-2011. 2015. Child Abuse and Neglect 47: 162-174.

Bugeja, L., M. Dawson, S. McIntyre, and C. Walsh. 2014. Domestic/Family Violence Death Reviews: An international comparison. Trauma, Violence and Abuse 16(2): 179-187

Tam, D., K. Schleicher, W. Wu, S.M. Kwok, W.E. Thurston, and M. Dawson. (2014). Social work interventions on intimate partner violence against women in China. Journal of Social Work (Available Online First).

Thurston, W., D. Tam, M. Dawson, M. Jackson, and S. Kwok. (2014). The intersection of gender and other social institutions in constructing interpersonal violence in Guangzhou China. Journal of Interpersonal Violence [Available Online First]

Poon, J., M. Dawson and M. Morton. (2014). Factors increasing the likelihood of dual and sole charging of women for intimate partner violence. Violence Against Women (Available Online First).

Dawson, M. and T. Hotton. (2014). Police charing practices for incidents of intimate partner violence in Canada. Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency 51(5): 655-683.

Tam, D., M. Dawson, M. Jackson, S. Kwok, and W.E. Thurston. (2013). Comparing criminal justice responses to violence against women in Canada and China. Asia-Pacific Journal of Social Work & Development 23(2): 106-120.

Fairbairn, J. and M. Dawson. (2013). Canadian news coverage of intimate partner homicide: Analysing changes over time. Feminist Criminology 8(3): 147-176.

Jaffe, P., M. Dawson and M. Campbell. (2013). Developing a National Collaborative Approach to Domestic Homicides: Domestic Homicide Review Committees. Canadian Journal of Criminology and Criminal Justice 55(1): 137-155.

Dawson, M. (2012). Intimacy, homicide, and punishment: Examining court outcomes over three decades.  Australian and New Zealand. Journal of Criminology 45(3): 400-422.

Tam, D., M. Dawson, M. Jackson, S. Kwok, and W.E. Thurston. (2012). Community Responses to Domestic Violence in China: Implications for Prevention and Intervention Work. Hong Kong Journal of Social Work 46(1-2): 43-61.

Kiepal, L., P. Carrington, and M. Dawson. (2012). Missing persons and social exclusion. Canadian Journal of Sociology 27(2): 137-168. 

Watt, Rochelle. 2012. University students’ propensity towards white-collar versus street crime. Studies by Undergraduate Researchers at Guelph 5(2): 5-12. 

Wells, Elisabeth C. (2012). “But most of all, they fought together”: Judicial attributions for sentences in convicting battered women who kill. Psychology of Women Quarterly 36(3).

Dawson, M., V. Pottie Bunge, & T. Balde. (2009). “National trends in intimate partner homicides: Explaining the decline, Canada, 1976-2001.” Violence Against Women 15(3): 276-306. [Nominated for the Journal’s 2009 Best Article Award]

Dinovitzer, R. & M. Dawson. (2007) “Family-based justice in the sentencing of domestic violence.” The British Journal of Criminology, 47(4): 655-670.

Dawson, M. (2007). Canadian Criminal Law and Physical Violence Against Women: Challenges and Changes. Bangladesh Journal of Law (November): 241-258.

Dawson, M. (2006). Intimacy and violence: Exploring the role of victim-defendant relationship in criminal law. Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology 96(4): 1417-1450.

Dawson, M. & S. Welsh. (2005) “Predicting the Quantity of Law: Single Versus Multiple Remedies in Sexual Harassment Cases.” The Sociological Quarterly 46: 699-718.

Dawson, M. (2005). “Intimate femicide followed by suicide: Examining the role of premeditation.” Suicide & Life-Threatening Behavior 35(1): 76-90.

Sev’er, A., M. Dawson, & H. Johnson. (2004). Lethal and non-lethal violence against women by intimate partners: Trends and prospects in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada. Violence Against Women 10(6): 563-576.

Dawson, M. (2004) “Rethinking the boundaries of intimacy at the end of the century: The role of victim-defendant relationship in criminal justice decision-making over time.” Law & Society Review 38(1): 105-138.

Johnson, H. and T. Hotton. (2003).  Losing Control: Homicide risk in estranged and intact intimate relationships. Homicide Studies, 7(1), 58-84.

Dawson, M. (2003) “The cost of ‘lost’ intimacy: The effect of relationship state on criminal justice decision-making.” The British Journal of Criminology 43(4): 689-709.

Welsh, S., M. Dawson, & A. Nierobis. (2002) “Legal Factors, Extra-Legal Factors or Changes in the Law? Using Criminal Justice Research to Understand the Resolution of Sexual Harassment Complaints over Time.” Social Problems 46(4).

Dawson, M. & R. Dinovitzer. (2001). Victim Cooperation and the Prosecution of Domestic Violence in a Specialized Court. Justice Quarterly 18(3): 593-622. [Reprinted in Criminal Justice: Concepts and Issues (An Anthology) (2004), edited by C.W. Eskridge. Los Angeles, CA: Roxbury.]

Dawson, M. & R. Gartner. (1998). Differences in the Characteristics of Intimate Femicide: The Role of Relationship State and Relationship Status. Homicide Studies 2: 378-399. [Ranked as the 6th most cited article published in this journal as of 2012]

M. Dawson, & M. Crawford. (1999). Woman Killing: Intimate Femicide in Ontario, 1974-1994, Resources for Feminist Research 26: 151-173[Reprints: (1) Crime in Canadian Society, 6th Edition (1999), edited by R. Silverman, J. Teevan and V. Sacco. Toronto: Harcourt Brace; (2) Family Patterns, Gender Relations, 2nd Edition (2001), edited by B. Fox. Oxford University Press; and (3) Femicide in Cross National Perspectives (2001), edited by D.E.H. Russell and R. Harms. Teachers College Press; (4)Violence Against Women: New Canadian Perspectives (2002), edited by McKenna &. Larkin: Inanna.

Other Publications

Sutton, D. and M. Dawson. 2017. Femicide of Older Women. Learning Network Brief (31). London, ON: Learning Network, Centre for Research and Education on Violence Against Women and Children.

Campbell, M., Hilton, NZ., Kropp, PR., Dawson, M., Jaffe, P. 2016. Domestic Violence Risk Assessment: Informing Safety Planning & Risk Management. Domestic Homicide Brief 2. London, ON: Canadian Domestic Homicide Prevention Initiative. ISBN 978-0-9688655-9-0.

Campbell, M., Dawson, M., Jaffe, P., Straatman, A.L. 2016. Domestic Homicide Death Review Committees: Speaking for the Dead to Protect the Living. Domestic Homicide Brief 1. London, ON: Canadian Domestic Homicide Prevention Initiative. 

Discussion Papers

Jaffe, P., M. Dawson, and M.Campbell. (2011). Lessons learned from domestic violence tragedies: Emerging research, policies and practices to prevent domestic homicide: A think tank discussion paper. Ottawa: Department of Justice Canada.

Dawson, M., J. Poon & M. Hubbert. (2010). Documenting resources for victims of violence in Canada: A workshop discussion paper. Ottawa: Department of Justice Canada.

Jaffe, P., M. Dawson, & M. Campbell. (2009). Multi-disciplinary Perspectives on Preventing Domestic Homicides: A Discussion Paper from a Canadian Think-Thank. Ottawa: Department of Justice Canada.

Jaffe, P. and M. Dawson. (2004). Domestic Homicides: Critical Issues in the Development of Death Review Committees. Toronto: Office of the Chief Coroner of Ontario.

Conference Proceedings

Dawson, M. (2009). Over three decades of public policy change: What has been the impact for victims of intimate partner violence and homicide. Proceedings of the First International Conference on Homicide. Canberra, ACT: Australian Institute of Criminology.

Dawson, M. (1999). Legal Reactions to Intimate Partner Homicide: A Preliminary Look at the Role of Gender and Intimacy. In Varieties of Homicide and Its Research: Proceedings of the 1999 Meeting of the Homicide Research Working Group, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), U.S. Department of Justice.

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