Who we are

Australia’s National Research Organisation for Women’s Safety Limited (ANROWS) is an independent, not-for-profit company established as an initiative under Australia’s National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010-2022 (the National Plan). It is jointly funded by the Commonwealth and all state and territory governments of Australia, who are the members of the company. ANROWS is governed by a Board of Directors, chaired by Emeritus Professor Anne Edwards AO, and operates under a Constitution. The Board includes:

  • Five independent Directors
  • One Commonwealth Government Director
  • Three state government Directors, appointed for a 2-year period (currently Northern Territory, Western Australia and Queensland).

Our mission is to deliver relevant and translatable research evidence which drives policy and practice leading to a reduction in the levels of violence against women and their children. Our goals are set out in our Strategic Plan.

Highlights from the last financial year can be found in our 2014/15 Annual Report.

Message from the Chair, Emeritus Professor Anne R Edwards AO

The National Centre of Excellence to reduce violence against women and their children was created as part of the 2011 National Plan to reduce violence against women and their children 2010-2022, an initiative of all Australian governments. 

I was appointed as the inaugural Chair in 2013 and have been working with the Board and staff to establish this new organisation.  In 2014 we are taking on a new name and we commence our operations as a research centre, under the leadership of the Chief Executive Officer, Heather Nancarrow, and with our first Strategic Plan in place.

We are now Australia’s National Research Organisation for Women’s Safety (ANROWS).

With the support of the Commonwealth government and of all State and Territory governments and after extensive consultations, a National Research Agenda covering the areas of domestic, family and sexual violence has been agreed which sets strategic directions and priorities for research for the next few years.  

ANROWS has been given a critically important leadership role to increase and improve knowledge about domestic and family violence and sexual assault and about strategies, policies, programs and services that are effective in reducing these forms of violence and in assisting those women and their children who are affected by such violence.

Statistics on the extent of domestic, family and sexual violence against women and their children are compelling and all the more confronting because these figures are increasing at the same time as Australia is making a major commitment to reverse the situation.  This requires coordinated activity by governments, service providers and professionals, researchers and the community in general.  At the same time there is a need to recognise diversity in the nature and experience of violence between population groups and communities and a corresponding need for policy and service responses to cater to that diversity.    

ANROWS has taken on a major task.  We are all fully aware of the size and complexity of the challenge but are encouraged by the support we have received so far.  We are confident that well-chosen and well-designed research will make a significant contribution to the overall objective of the National Plan: to reduce violence against women and their children.