Report: Bullying in a Networked Era

The Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University is pleased to share a new literature review by the Youth and Media team, contributing to The Kinder & Braver World Project led by danah boyd and John Palfrey:

Bullying in a Networked Era: A Literature Review“, by Nathaniel Levy, Sandra Cortesi, Urs Gasser, Edward Crowley, Meredith Beaton, June Casey, and Caroline Nolan, presents an aggregation and summary of recent academic literature on youth bullying and seeks to make scholarly work on this important topic more broadly accessible to a concerned public audience, including parents, caregivers, educators, and practitioners.

The document is guided by two questions: “What is bullying?” and “What can be done about bullying?” and focuses on the online and offline contexts in which bullying occurs. Although the medium or means through which bullying takes place influence bullying dynamics, as previous research demonstrates, online and offline bullying are more similar than different. This dynamic is especially true as a result of the increasing convergence of technologies. Looking broadly at the commonalities as well as the differences between offline and online phenomena fosters greater understanding of the overall system of which each is a part and highlights both the off- and online experiences of young people – whose involvement is not typically limited to one end of the spectrum.

The authors wish to thank all the collaborators at the Berkman Center, especially danah boyd and John Palfrey, for encouragement, guidance, and help. Thanks also to Dewey Cornell, Mia Doces, Dorothy Espelage, David Finkelhor, Lisa Jones, Amanda Lenhart, Mary Madden, Susan Swearer, and Michele Ybarra for their contributions and important work in the field. Further, we are deeply grateful for the invaluable research assistance provided by all the Youth and Media Lab team members.

The Youth and Media project at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University encompasses an array of research, advocacy, and development initiatives around youth and technology. To learn more, visit:

The Kinder & Braver World Project (KBW) is co-presented by the Born This Way Foundation (BTWF) and generously supported by the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. The authors would like to thank Connie Yowell for her leadership and support. To learn more about the KBW Project and to access all publications in the KBW research series, visit: