How are boys and young men experiencing their online worlds?

REDI, Deakin’s strategic research centre in education, has received funding for a new research project that seeks to better understand the role the online world plays in the lives of boys and young men.

Renowned nationally and internationally in the areas of masculinities and social justice, REDI’s Professor Amanda Keddie and Associate Professor Josh Roose from The Alfred Deakin Institute for Citizenship and Globalisation (ADI) are leading the project alongside Professor Michael Flood from Queensland University of Technology (QUT).

Funded by the Office of the eSafety Commissioner, REDI’s project will draw on focus group and individual interviews to understand what motivates and influences boys’ and young men’s online lives including what influences their sense of identity, behaviours and beliefs, and feelings of belonging and acceptance.

“The research seeks to build an evidence base for eSafety to better understand the scope and complexity of boys’ and young men’s online experiences,” said the project lead, Professor Amanda Keddie.

The study is timely in examining the broad range of young men’s online experiences, especially in relation to the gender politics of the present moment where there are concerns about the spread of ‘toxic masculinity’ online and influencers such as Andrew Tate.

“We aim to uncover these factors through a youth-centred and creative qualitative approach, using focus groups and individual interviews with 100 boys and young men from a range of backgrounds,” Professor Keddie added.

The research will guide eSafety’s foundational work on men and boys and will serve as a basis for further work in this area, supporting existing national educational and campaigning efforts about boys’ and men’s role in supporting gender respect.

Find out more about the project.

News 12 September 2023