Experiences of (non-)reporting sexual violence on university campuses: mined paths and mixed outcomes



Bergeron M, Fethi I, Baril K, Ricci S, Dion J, Ouellette M-H, Paquette G, Paul T, Pelland M-A, Ponsot A-S, Savoie L, Viau C. (2023). Expériences de (non-)signalement des violences sexuelles en milieu universitaire : des parcours minés et des issues mitigées. Recherches féministes. 36(1), 243–262.


Sexual violence on university campuses (SVUC) is highly prevalent yet remains vastly under-reported. In this article, the authors describe reasons for (non-)reporting SVUC, and for those who did, the institutional response and outcomes. Qualitative analysis of 197 testimonies highlights several challenges victims face when choosing to report SVUC. Indeed, the choice to report or not may stem from a sense of fear for oneself and others, from an assessment of costs and benefits, and is influenced by a process of violence normalization. Unequal power dynamics within the university bring about additional constraints to reporting. Results support the need for mandatory training and awareness-raising messages that could improve victims’ trust in academic institutions.