skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 201681 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Calculating Intimate Danger: MOSAIC and the Emerging Practice of Risk Assessment
Author(s): Jennifer Trone
Corporate Author: Vera Institute of Justice
United States of America
Date Published: 1999
Page Count: 31
Sponsoring Agency: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
US Dept of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women
Washington, DC 20530
Vera Institute of Justice
New York, NY 10279
Sale Source: Vera Institute of Justice
233 Broadway, 12th Floor
New York, NY 10279
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Type: Test/Measurement
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This report profiles and presents assessments of MOSAIC-20, a commercially developed computer program designed to assess whether abusive intimate relationships (heterosexual relationships in which men are the aggressors) have the features associated with continued violence, escalation, and homicide.
Abstract: MOSAIC not only offers a diagnosis but makes risk assessments more thorough and consistent across situations, while documenting the process. This report reflects the opinions and experiences of approximately 30 individuals who use MOSAIC regularly or who are familiar with it, namely, law enforcement officers, researchers, prosecutors, a nurse practitioner, probation officers, victim advocates, and a representative of the company (Gavin de Becker, Inc.) that developed MOSAIC. All MOSAIC programs present a series of multiple-choice questions. The questions, which have three or four possible answers, represent behaviors or attitudes that range from those assumed to be positive or neutral to those assumed to be negative or dangerous. Based on the answers selected, MOSAIC generates a narrative report that lists each question, followed by an explanation of the chosen response. Following a general assessment, the report presents a numerical risk assessment from 1 to 10. Issues discussed in this report are the technical environment for MOSAIC, cost, training and technical support, the core of the system, the database, and the development process. MOSAIC's usefulness is discussed in the context of research on risk assessment, and one section of the paper describes two other domestic violence risk-assessment instruments for purposes of comparison: the Danger Assessment and the Spousal Assault Risk Assessment Guide. The report concludes with an examination of the claims of MOSAIC's effectiveness in risk assessment to aid in enforcement and prosecution in cases of domestic violence, as well as contrary opinions. Other issues associated with its use are also discussed. Guidelines that apply to using any risk-assessment tool are listed.
Main Term(s): Police policies and procedures
Index Term(s): Dangerousness; Domestic assault; Domestic assault prevention; Investigative techniques; Risk management; Violence prediction; Violence prevention
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.