Research Areas research areas


  • Sharyn J. Potter, PhD, MPH, is a Professor of in the Department of Women and Gender Studies and the Co-founder and Executive Director of Research at the Prevention Innovations Research Center: Ending Sexual and Relationship Violence and Stalking at the University of New Hampshire. She is also the Co-founder and Vice-President of Research of Soteria Solutions. Professor Potter is a global leader on the social scientific development and evaluation of bystander intervention strategies. Dr. Potter’s work focuses on engaging community members to work collaboratively to reduce sexual and relationship violence, stalking and harassment in high schools, colleges and universities, the United States Military and other work places. She has been a leader in the development, dissemination and evaluation and of theory- and research-based bystander intervention prevention strategies including the uSafeUS® mobile app, the Know Your Power® Bystander Social Marketing Campaign, and a bystander video game that models pro-social bystander behaviors, all of which have been shown to be effective with both campus and military audiences. Dr. Potter and her colleagues adapted both the Bringing in the Bystander® In-Person Prevention Program and the Know Your Power® Bystander Social Marketing Campaign for two US Army Posts in Europe (USAREUR). These two pilot studies represent a very small pool of studies specifically focused on sexual violence prevention in the US Military. She also led a study for the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault to examine sexual misconduct policy delivery methods. In addition, Dr. Potter is a national expert on designing and administering sexual violence prevalence studies. Her recent TEDx talk describes the individual and societal economic and human capital losses attributed to sexual violence. Dr. Potter’s work has been groundbreaking in her effort to partner with organizations as they strategize and implement cultural change that impacts all organizational levels. Her work has been cited in international and national news media including the Guardian, New York Times, National Public Radio, Vox, Teen Vogue and Chronicle of Higher Education.
  • Publications

    Academic Article

    Year Title
    2019 Sexual violence victimization among community college students.Journal of American College Health.  67:674-687. 2019
    2019 Gender Differences in Veterans' Perceptions of Harassment on Veterans Health Administration Grounds.Women's Health Issues.  29 Suppl 1:S83-S93. 2019
    2019 Developing and Piloting Videogames to Increase College and University Students' Awareness and Efficacy of the Bystander Role in Incidents of Sexual Violence.Games for health journal.  8:24-34. 2019
    2018 Multiple sexual violence prevention tools: doses and boostersJournal of Aggression, Conflict and Peace Research.  10:145-155. 2018
    2016 Conveying campus sexual misconduct policy information to college and university students: Results from a 7-campus study.Journal of American College Health.  64:438-447. 2016
    2016 Reducing Sexual Assault on Campus: Lessons From the Movement to Prevent Drunk Driving.American Journal of Public Health.  106:822-829. 2016
    2015 Changing attitudes about being a bystander to violence: translating an in-person sexual violence prevention program to a new campus.Violence Against Women.  21:165-187. 2015
    2012 Addressing sexual and relationship violence in the LGBT community using a bystander framework.Harvard Review of Psychiatry.  20:201-208. 2012
    2012 Translating sexual assault prevention from a college campus to a United States military installation: piloting the know-your-power bystander social marketing campaign.Journal of Interpersonal Violence.  27:1593-1621. 2012
    2012 Using a multimedia social marketing campaign to increase active bystanders on the college campus.Journal of American College Health.  60:282-295. 2012
    2011 An examination of SANE data: clinical considerations based on victim-assailant relationship.Journal of Forensic Nursing.  7:137-144. 2011
    2011 Bringing in the Bystander in-person prevention program to a U.S. military installation: results from a pilot study.Military Medicine.  176:870-875. 2011
    2011 Bringing in the target audience in bystander social marketing materials for communities: suggestions for practitioners.Violence Against Women.  17:797-812. 2011
    2011 Special Issue: Engaging Communities to End Sexual Violence: Current Research on Bystander Focused Prevention IntroductionViolence Against Women.  17:679-683. 2011
    2011 Using social self-identification in social marketing materials aimed at reducing violence against women on campus.Journal of Interpersonal Violence.  26:971-990. 2011
    2011 Providing Context for Social Workers' Response to Sexual Assault VictimsAffilia - Journal of Women and Social Work.  26:90-94. 2011
    2011 An assessment of state level sexual assault prevalence estimates.Maternal and Child Health Journal.  15:77-86. 2011
    2011 The victimization experiences of women in the workforce: moving beyond single categories of work or violence.Violence and Victims.  26:513-532. 2011
    2008 Designing, implementing, and evaluating a media campaign illustrating the bystander role.Journal of Prevention and Intervention in the Community Prevention in Human Services.  36:39-55. 2008
    2006 An examination of full-time employment in the direct-care workforceJournal of Applied Gerontology.  25:356-374. 2006
    2005 From a relationship to encounter: an examination of longitudinal and lateral dimensions in the doctor-patient relationship.Social Science and Medicine.  61:465-479. 2005
    2003 Executive turnover and the legal environment: The case of California hospitals, 1960-1995Sociological Forum.  18:441-464. 2003
    2003 Integrating service learning into the research methods courseTeaching Sociology.  31:38-48. 2003
    2001 A longitudinal analysis of the distinction between for-profit and not-for-profit hospitals in America.Journal of Health and Social Behavior Journal of health and human behavior.  42:17-44. 2001

    Patents And Disclosures

    Year Title
    Trademark: KNOW YOUR POWER

    Principal Investigator On

  • Campus Sexual and Relationship Violence Prevention Consortium  awarded by Campus SRV Prevention Consortium 2018 - 2023
  • EHY Core Research  awarded by University of New Mexico 2020 - 2021
  • Bringing uSafeUS to all NH Post-Secondary Institutions 2020  awarded by NH Department of Justice (Attorney General) 2020 - 2021
  • uSafeHS  awarded by National Science Foundation (NSF) 2019 - 2020
  • Technology Enhancements Funds for Existing VOCA Projects  awarded by NH Department of Justice (Attorney General) 2020
  • IPA Navy  awarded by US DOD, Navy 2019 - 2020
  • Victims of Crime Act (VOCA)  awarded by NH Department of Justice (Attorney General) 2018 - 2020
  • Non-Residential and Community College Sexual Assault Policy and Prevention Initiative  awarded by US DHHS, Dept of Health & Human Services 2018 - 2019
  • Comprehensive Sexual and Relationship Violence and Stalking Prevention Strategies  awarded by McLane Middleton Professional Association 2015 - 2018
  • Adaptation and Evaluation of Video Game to Reduce Sexual Violence on Campus  awarded by US DOJ, Department of Justice 2015 - 2018
  • uSafeUS  awarded by National Science Foundation (NSF) 2018
  • Non-Residential and Community College Sexual Assault Policy and Prevention Initiative  awarded by US DHHS, Dept of Health & Human Services 2017 - 2018
  • SHARP  awarded by Catharsis Productions 2016 - 2017
  • Non-Residential and Community College Sexual Assault Policy and Prevention Initative  awarded by US DHHS, Dept of Health & Human Services 2016 - 2017
  • Discussion Group Design and Facilitation Assistance  awarded by US Veterans Administration 2016 - 2017
  • Prevention Innovations Assessment of Army SHARP  awarded by General Dynamics Information Technology 2015 - 2016
  • Prevention Innovations Assessment of Army SHARP  awarded by General Dynamics Information Technology 2014 - 2015
  • Prevention Innovations Assessment of Army SHARP  awarded by General Dynamics Information Technology 2014 - 2015
  • Adaption of the UNH Know-Your-Power Social Marketing Campaign for University of California Merced  awarded by University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) 2011
  • Open Doors to Safety Projects  awarded by New Hampshire Coalition Against Domestic Violence 2008 - 2011
  • Army Pilot Study for Bystander Intervention  awarded by US DOD, Army 2009 - 2010
  • Teaching Activities

  • Internship Independent Study Taught course 2018
  • Internship Independent Study Taught course 2018
  • Research Internship Taught course 2018
  • Senior Thesis Taught course 2017
  • Doctoral Research Taught course 2017
  • Senior Honors Thesis Taught course 2017
  • Senior Honors Thesis Taught course 2016
  • Sexualized Violence Taught course 2016
  • Sexualized Violence Taught course 2016
  • Independent Reading & Research Taught course 2015
  • Sexualized Violence Taught course 2015
  • Medical Sociology Taught course 2014
  • Statistics Taught course 2014
  • Education And Training

  • B.S., State University of New York
  • M.P.H. Public Health, Emory University
  • Ph.D. Sociology, Emory University
  • Full Name

  • Sharyn Potter
  • Mailing Address

  • University of New Hampshire

    Prevention Innovations Research Center

    9 MADBURY RD Suite 405