The Observatory on Cyberbullying, Cyberhate and Online Harassment was established at DCU Anti-Bullying Centre in April 2021. The creation of the Observatory follows from the introduction of the Harassment, Harmful Communications and Related Offences Act 2020 (Coco’s Law).
The Observatory seeks to provide up-to-date research on the contours, functions, and impacts of cyberbullying, cyberhate, and online harassment among teenagers and adults in Ireland.
Working with the Department of Justice and the Department of Education over a three-year period, the research team at DCU Anti-Bullying Centre will focus on providing up-to-date research, and resources related to tackling cyberbullying, cyberhate, and online harassment, and the implementation of Coco’s Law.
The Observatory has four main deliverables:
The Observatory produces an annual report on the current state of research and policy around cyberbullying, cyberhate and online harassment in Ireland and internationally. The research conducted at the Observatory will feed into research reports and papers to be published each year, which will inform policy makers as well as the general public.
The Observatory established an online repository of resources on cyberbullying, cyberhate and online harassment. The online repository will include different types of resources, such as recent research papers, news reporting, videos, blog posts and podcasts. The general aim of the repository is providing information and raising the general public’s awareness in relation to the phenomena of cyberbullying, cyberhate and online harassment. The repository works as a knowledge mobilisation hub, in terms of bringing together researchers and the general public with the aim to raise awareness and promote evidence-based programmes and best practice.
The Observatory hosts three annual webinars where national and international scholars will share their knowledge on various aspects of cyberbullying, cyberhate and online harassment. The webinars are open to researchers as well as policy makers and the general public. For more information on the annual webinars please click here.
The Observatory will conduct original research into experiences of harmful online behaviour in Ireland. We are interested in better understanding the online experiences of both young people and adults and what might be needed in order to meet their needs and fight online abuse. The knowledge generated with this research will contribute to inform evidence-based policy and practice.