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The goal of the ACE Program is to reduce the incidence of youth violence in defined communities by achieving the following objectives:

  • Monitoring the magnitude and distribution of youth interpersonal violence.
  • Building the scientific infrastructure necessary to support the development and widespread application of effective youth violence prevention interventions.
  • Promoting interdisciplinary research strategies to address the problem of youth violence.
  • Fostering collaborations between academic researchers and communities.
  • Mobilizing and empowering communities to address the problem of youth violence.


The mission of the National Academic Centers of Excellence (ACE) on Youth Violence Prevention is to research and prevent youth violence by using effective violence surveillance tools, identifying and testing successful violence prevention programs, and strengthening responses to youth violence through community mobilization efforts.


Many factors influence the prevalence of youth violence. Parents, peers, and local culture all play a role in determining the level of violence in a community. Therefore, a multifaceted dynamic approach is needed to reduce and prevent youth violence. The ACEs and their community partners collaborate to reduce youth violence by identifying, implementing, and evaluating promising prevention programs. The research findings from these programs can contribute to the evidence base and may also serve to build a community’s capacity to respond to future public health issues.

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