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TRACeD Final Conference - Aspects of gender-based cyberviolence: Recognition, Prevention, and Ways to address the phenomenon

The culmination of the EU co-funded project TRACeD - Tackling gender based cyberviolence among adolescent girls and young women was marked by its final conference held on Thursday, February 22, 2024 in Amalia Athens Hotel (Athens, Greece). The Conference brought together stakeholders, competent authorities, experts, and advocates in the field to reflect on the project's outcomes, share experiences and discuss further strategies to combat gender-based cyberviolence.

The conference begun with a heartfelt welcome to all participants from Sofia Zaharaki, Minister of Social Cohesion and the Family of Greece, emphasizing the significance of prioritizing efforts to combat gender-based cyberviolence and ensure the protection of women’s rights and dignity both online and offline. Elena Kountoura, Member of the European Parliament, highlighted the European Union's commitment to promoting gender equality and combating online violence through comprehensive policy frameworks, and collaborative initiatives such as TRACeD. Alexandra Attalides, Member of Parliament of the Republic of Cyprus, underscored the importance of legislative measures and cross-border cooperation in addressing the complex challenges posed by cyberviolence and fostering a culture of respect and inclusion online. Phedra Luna Neel (Directorate-General Justice and Consumers, Unit D.3 – Gender Equality) emphasized the European Commission's dedication to advancing gender equality through legal instruments such as the EU Directive, but also projects like TRACeD, and addressing emerging threats and safeguard girls’ and women’s rights in the digital era. Tamara Weingerl Požar, Ambassador of the Republic of Slovenia, highlighted the importance of international cooperation and dialogue in tackling gender-based cyberviolence, reaffirming Slovenia's commitment to promoting digital safety and human rights, whereas Dr. Jože Ruparčič, Deputy Ombudsman of the Republic of Slovenia, highlighted the impact of the pandemic in the increase of gender-based cyberviolence, underscoring the importance of collaborative efforts to address this pressing issue.

One of the highlights of the Conference was the presentation of the project's platform and the experiences of the Cyber Guardians, the multidisciplinary team of experts who provide support and guidance through the Help Chat.

In the next session, moderated by Efthymia Kinna, MSc Psychologist and Psychotherapist, a diverse panel of experts delved into the multifaceted nature of gender-based violence, dissecting its underlying causes and far-reaching effects. Matina Papagiannopoulou, Scientific coordinator of the Νational Network of Support Structures General Secretariat for Equality and Human Rights Research - Research Centre for Gender Equality (ΚΕΘΙ), provided insights into the systemic structures perpetuating such violence. Catherine Kakoulakis, Licensed Educational/School Psychologist from Cyprus, shed light on the psychological dimensions and impacts of gender-based violence within educational institutions. Kelly Ioannou, Managing Director of the Cyber Security International Institute and Lecturer in Digital Criminology, offered perspectives on the technological facets and cyber dimensions of gender-based violence. Lastly, Maria Stratigaki, Professor of Social Policy at Panteion University and Deputy Mayor of Social Solidarity & Equality for the Municipality of Athens, emphasized the importance of addressing gender-based violence from a broader social and policy standpoint.

The institutional and legal frameworks surrounding gender-based violence were discussed in the last session, focusing on existing gaps and proposing policy solutions. Theoni Koufonikolakou, Ombudsman for the Child, offered insights into the protection mechanisms available for young survivors of gender-based violence and highlighted areas for improvement. Dr. Argyro Rentzi and Dr. Ilias Maroudas, Executives at the Private Office of the General Secretary of Primary, Secondary & Special Education within the Ministry of Education, Religious Affairs & Sports, discussed the role of education in preventing and addressing gender-based violence and presented the Ministry’s initiatives to combat bullying and cyberviolence among kinds. Foteini Milioni, Dr. of Law and Director of EPANODOS, provided legal perspectives on gender-based violence, outlining potential policy interventions and legislative reforms aimed at enhancing protections and support for survivors.

In conclusion, the insights gleaned and commitments made during these sessions are a testament to our collective determination to combat gender-based violence comprehensively. All participants emphasized the need for continued research, advocacy and capacity-building activities such as the ones held during the implementation of TRACeD, as well as the need for joint efforts and synergies to address gaps in knowledge, promote prevention and strengthen support systems for victims.

The TRACeD project is a two-year project co-funded by the EU which started in March 2022 and concludes in February 2024. It is implemented by the Centre for European Constitutional Law - Themistokles and Dimitris Tsatsos Foundation, in collaboration with the following partners: ActionAid Hellas, CODECA - Center for Social Cohesion, Development & Care, CSIi - Cyber Security International Institute, Fondazione Carolina, and the University of Ljubljana.

For more information about the project and its outcomes, please visit the TRACeD platform


Back to list of notificationsPublished: 23. February 2024 | Category: News