Ortner Center on Violence & Abuse in Relationships

Who we are 

The Ortner Center on Violence & Abuse is a collection of faculty and students at the University of Pennsylvania who research issues related to violence, primarily violence against women & girls. 


The Center is a vital resource for policy makers, agency directors, researchers, and educators as they search for ways to reduce violence. In addition to publishing research findings in scholarly journals, Center affiliates teach related graduate and undergraduate courses at Penn. In addition, they testify before policymakers, collaborate with community-based organizations, and reach the general public through various media outlets.  


Interdisciplinary collaboration across Penn's campus is a cornerstone of this unique Center. Such an approach is essential because no one discipline is able to address the multiple facets of the violence.


The Director of the Ortner Center is Susan B. Sorenson, Ph.D. For more information about her, click here.


The Center is named for Evelyn Jacobs Ortner, who established the Center through a gift to the School of Social Policy & Practice at the University of Pennsylvania. For more information about Mrs. Ortner, click here.