The integration of etiology and risk in sex offenders: A theoretical model

Anthony Beech, T Ward

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

182 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, we incorporate the static and dynamic risk factors into an etiological framework. The major purpose in constructing the model is to link two related clinical domains in order to further both risk assessment and theory-directed research. The literature on risk assessment is first outlined, and problems in the way risk is measured and conceptualized are noted. Next, four major etiological theories of sexual abuse are described in order to demonstrate correspondence between risk domains and postulated causal mechanisms. Finally, the integrated model of risk and etiological elements and its clinical and research utility is discussed. In this model, interaction among significant learning events, psychological vulnerabilities (as evidenced by historical and stable dynamic risk factors), contextual or triggering factors, and their convergence in offense-related psychological states (i.e., acute dynamic factors) is clearly depicted. (C) 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-63
Number of pages33
JournalAggression and Violent Behavior
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2004


  • risk
  • etiology
  • sexual offenders


Dive into the research topics of 'The integration of etiology and risk in sex offenders: A theoretical model'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this