This thesis aims to assess the adequacy of Dutch law in addressing technology-facilitated sexual violence (hereinafter TFSV), explore the challenges in enforcing the laws, and provide recommendations for improving their implementation. The thesis is based on a legal analysis of digital sexual crimes, accountability, and adjudication in the Netherlands, with a focus on the effects on women and girls. It includes interviews with three professionals in the field: a psychology expert at the Centre for Sexual Violence, an expert from the Netherlands Institute for the Study of Crime and Law Enforcement, and an academic specialising in relevant studies.

  • Thesis student: Aisha Aziz (Law)   
  • Thesis supervisor: Ms. Linda Louis (Law)   
  • MLR contact person: Dr. Anna Matczak (SSMS)

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Connection to the Multilevel Regulation framework

Multi-level regulation (hereinafter MLR) refers to a governance approach where regulatory responsibilities are dispersed among various actors, including international, supernational, or national entities. In practice, these levels often overlap and are not isolated, allowing for a comprehensive understanding of all the actors involved in resolving an issue and how their tasks intertwine. The MLR Research Group focuses on addressing legal challenges by working with private actors on different levels to ensure constant adaptation of public regulation, as well as on exploring topics that aim to challenge traditional regulation of the law. As technology is an ever-evolving field so are its impacts on society, thus the research group would like to explore ways in which the effects can be reduced. 

The MLR framework is crucial to fully grasp the complexity and multi-agency approach of legal responses to harms, such as the accelerating TFSV. This significance stems from MLR’s ability to navigate the intricate networks, diverse actors, and varied practices that govern TFSV offenses. The significance of MLR becomes evident in understanding the intricate complexities of TFSV. As TFSV often lies in being a borderless crime, outside the traditional framework of a face-to-face crime, combating it requires a broader perspective that requires multiple jurisdictions and multiple facets to combat. In its nature, MLR is able to integrate different actors and norms from different levels, including international organizations, private corporations, NGOs, and other bodies beyond the state actor. Therefore, the incorporation of MLR in combating the multi-faceted issue of TFSV is essential as it may span over multiple jurisdictions and different levels of actors and affects in some cases victims in more than one jurisdiction.