The Amaly Bisharat Centre for Studies and Documentation

The JWU’s Amaly Bisharat documentation centre is not the only documentation centre in Jordan, but it is the only centre to document and archive information on battered women.  The centre is devoted to research on violence against women (VAW) and on other gender issues. Its emphasis is on women's rights legislation, policies and laws, the causes behind domestic violence, and women's participation in political life.

The centre also documents and archives information from activities related to the JWU’s shelters, counselling services, hotlines and pilot projects throughout the country.

In addition, through meetings and interviews, the centre has collected and documented information from people who worked on women’s issues during the imposition of martial law (1957 – 1991). This information has enabled researchers, volunteers, students and Jordanian society at large to better understand how the status of Jordanian women has changed since that time.

Theoretical concepts on feminism, secularism and other relevant issues are also promoted to build awareness among young women, thus enabling them to develop independent thinking and understand constructive criticism.

Why the Centre is Necessary

  • It provides reliable and current information about women’s issues in Jordan.
  • It empowers women through capacity building and awareness-raising, with seminars, workshops, round-table discussions, conferences, and cultural forums.
  • It allows various stakeholders, such as researchers, students, and I/NGOs, to access information on women’s rights and on VAW.
  • It provides a platform of advocacy for positive change by influencing policy-makers and the media.
  • It functions as a repository for raw data on VAW, gathered from the JWU’s programs.


The Centre’s Challenges

At present, the JWU’s documentation centre has about 5,000 files on women survivors of violence.  Most of these files consist of raw data.  Therefore, the centre faces the enormous challenge of analyzing, summarizing and categorizing this huge amount of data in a systematic way so as to provide meaningful information to a wide range of stakeholders and decision-makers.

An inventory of reliable information on VAW in particular and women’s rights in general is essential to supporting the advocacy efforts by the JWU.   It is also essential to maintaining a good relationship between the JWU and the media.

Another challenge the centre faces is documenting the history of the women’s movement in Jordan, which is particularly important for the younger generation of Jordanian women.  The advancement of the status of women can be measured only by considering the history of the women’s movement and its evolution.   However, at present, there are very few historical records that document the women’s movement in Jordan. 


Therefore, the centre plans to increase its historical documentation through the collection of all scattered information about the women’s movement.  In addition, the JWU plans to produce a documentary film about the women’s movement in Jordan.  Copies of the film will be distributed regionally and nationally to relevant organizations.

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