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Journal Article

Citation

Zych I, Baldry AC, Farrington DP, Llorent VJ. Aggress. Violent Behav. 2019; 45: 83-97.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2019, Elsevier Publishing)

DOI

10.1016/j.avb.2018.03.004

PMID

unavailable

Abstract

Cyberbullying is a relatively new aggressive behavior in which young people repeatedly and intentionally inflict harm on peers, using electronic devices. Cyberbullying has very damaging consequences and studies on the topic are increasing. Nevertheless, there are still gaps in sound knowledge regarding factors that could protect children from being cyberbullies or cybervictims. The current systematic review and meta-analysis was conducted to overcome limitations of previous studies on risk factors to establish if and how empathy is related to the different cyberbullying roles. After exhaustive searches with rigorous inclusion and exclusion criteria, 25 studies were included. Cyberbullying perpetration was found to be related to low empathy (OR = 1.5) and this relationship held also after controlling for covariates (OR = 1.3) but cybervictimization was not significantly related to empathy (OR = 0.94). There were some indications that cybervictims could have high affective empathy (OR = 0.83), but more research is needed to clarify this relationship.

RESULTS are presented also separately for the relationship between affective and cognitive empathy and different cyberbullying roles. There were not enough studies to draw conclusions about the relationship between empathy and being a cyberbully/victim or defender, but some tendencies were found and described. These results have important implications for policy and practice and might be very useful in designing specific tailored programs to prevent cyberbullying.


Language: en

Keywords

Cyberbullying; Cybervictimization; Empathy; Meta-analysis; Systematic review

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