Following from this month’s theme discussion of Jerusalem, this review highlights the extraordinary website of PASSIA, an institution which has in countless occasions left its mark on the society, culture and academia of Jerusalem.
It is extraordinary not only in its wealth of information, but also in its easily manoeuvred navigational elements, taking you into the deep recesses of its vast resources in a matter of a few clicks. The designers have done their work exceedingly well and the website flows very naturally to its English speaking audience.
You are greeted by a straightforward web page with a main logo in the centre and sections neatly displayed on both sides, with a highlighted article below the central logo, and a quick Contact Us section below with a visitor’s counter. The left-hand column contains the familiar navigation to About Us, Conferences, Seminars, Meetings, Special Projects, Jerusalem, and the Religious Unit, while the right column takes you to the already familiar 2006 diary sections of What’s New, Palestine Facts and Info, Publications, and Links, with the additional Guestbook, Search facility and the Contact Us sections.
As we probe deeper into the various sections, the layout changes to the two-column format with the navigation on the left and the detail in the right column. This layout works very well when there is a lot of information to display, and in this case it does so with neat graphics and clear text taking you on the journey of discovery of a multitude of Jerusalem and Palestinian conferences, seminars, meetings, etc., the latest of which was on 12 July at the time of review.
The seminars are tackled by training programme such as Human Capacity Development, Young Leaders, Civic Education, Civil Society Empowerment, and others, or by year. The Meetings and Workshops section handles the different topics from 1992 till the present time. The Religious Unit is a relatively new addition and subsequently does not contain as extensive an outlay as the other sections.
The Jerusalem section illustrates the massive knowledge this institution has accumulated over the years of its unique presence in the Holy City to openly discuss its status and future locally and abroad. The remaining sections draw on the work done in committees to outline the facts and information about the Jerusalem and Palestinian questions, as well as the extensive Links section which takes you on a very comprehensive review of research articles to date. A handy search feature is also included along with a site map which makes the explorer’s journey as effortless as could possibly be.
It is naturally very hard to critique such a well designed and maintained website. My only gripe would be the captioning of photographs taken with dates. Overall, though, I highly recommend to put this site on your favourites list and keep coming back to it, for it contains a wealth of information rarely assembled anywhere else. Well done!
Gabriel Batato, IT SpecialistYour feedback about my reviews to email@example.com is welcome.
Your feedback about my reviews to firstname.lastname@example.org is welcome.