Conflict in motion

1-Minute video of my research made by the University of Groningen.

Violence against women is a major public health problem and human rights violation: one in three women (30%) experiences physical or sexual violence in their lifetime. Victims often experience a ‘freeze’ response: their possibilities to act, or affordances, disappear and with that their sense of agency. Experiencing such helplessness can have serious and long-lasting effects, such as PTSD and depression.

In the research project Conflict in motion I investigate the dynamic interaction between the sense of agency, the emergence of possibilities for action (affordances) and the movement coordination between individuals in conflict interaction in physical conflict. How do you experience agency when your possibilities for action are dependent on the coordination with another? And how can you prepare for a threatening interaction that requires improvisation?

I investigate this using an ecological dynamics approach, measuring movement behaviour (kinematic and kinetic time series), psychological experience(semi-structured interviews and questionnaires) and physiological stress-response (heart rate variability) in ecologically valid experiments, using sparring sessions between experienced martial artists and elements of the Women’s self defense course  I developed in collaboration with the Creative Fighting Arts Foundation.  

I investigate this using an ecological dynamics approach, measuring movement behaviour (kinematic and kinetic time series), psychological experience(semi-structured interviews and questionnaires) and physiological stress-response (heart rate variability) in ecologically valid experiments, using sparring sessions between experienced martial artists and elements of the Women’s self defense course  I developed in collaboration with the Creative Fighting Arts Foundation.  


Involved in this project:

Prof. Kerry L. Marsh

Dr. Namkje Koudenburg