The ICFJ Online Violence Project


ICFJ leads trailblazing research on a global scale to document and fight online violence against women journalists. This dangerous phenomenon – often instigated and fuelled by political forces and associated with disinformation campaigns – threatens journalists' safety and poisons democratic discourse.

In 2022, The Chilling: A global study of online violence against women journalists was published as a culmination of an ICFJ-led research project commissioned by UNESCO spanning three years. The 300-page book is the most geographically, linguistically, and ethnically diverse scoping of gender-based online violence to date. It draws on the testimonies of more than 850 international women journalists who were surveyed and interviewed, and has generated multiple policy responses and international coverage.

ICFJ and our partners have also published big data case studies on emblematic women journalists from around the world, including Nobel Peace Prize laureate Maria Ressa. And our latest research will inform the development of an early warning system to help prevent online abuse from escalating into physical harassment and violence.

See below to learn more about ICFJ's work to combat online violence against women journalists, led by Dr. Julie Posetti, deputy vice president of global research.

  • The Chilling, a groundbreaking global study on online violence against women journalists that includes over 100 recommendations for action
  • Online Violence Big Data Case Studies focused on emblematic cases of gendered online violence take readers into the core of digital attacks through computational analysis of millions of social media accounts blended with contextual research, to provide hard evidence to demonstrate the lived experience of journalists under attack online. 
  • Online Violence Early Warning System to help detect, predict and ultimately prevent violence against women journalists
  • Online Violence Response Hub, a one-stop shop for women journalists and their allies, developed in partnership with ICFJ