Growing levels of national unemployment constitute one of the Arab Gulf's key domestic policy challenges and not least because the majority of new jobs will need to be created in the skilled private sector. We demonstrate that while female nationals obtain proportionately more of the vocationally orientated, tertiary level qualifications that this sector requires, structural issues and cultural attitudes continue to act as barriers. Based on the findings of interviews with policymakers in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, we contend that while incumbent labour nationalization policies have led to marginal increases in female participation rates, more systemic labour market reforms will be needed in order to better capitalize on the ‘valuable human resource asset’ that they represent.
- Education and human resource development
- Gender economics
- Gulf Cooperation Council
- Labour market policy
- Labour nationalization
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management