Directorate for Public Governance


Women in Public Life

Gender, Law and Policy in the Middle East and North Africa

Public institutions play a critical role in promoting gender-sensitive policies and gender equality more broadly, in the MENA region and around the world. Advancing gender balance in public institutions and public life more generally, including the judiciary, parliaments, and the political executive constitutes a major step towards gender-responsive policies and non-discrimination and serves as a key milestone in promoting gender equality. This report provides a comparative overview of the policies affecting women’s participation in public life across the MENA region. It examines the existing barriers to women’s access to public decision-making positions, and provides a cross-country assessment of current instruments and institutions to advance women’s empowerment in the MENA region. The report undertakes an analysis of the existing legal barriers for gender equality in public life, including with regard to political and economic rights, freedom of movement, labour law, family law, access to justice and gender-based violence and provides focused policy-recommendations to close legal and institutional gaps. The report has been prepared by the OECD, in partnership with Centre for Arab Women Training and Research (CAWTAR) and with the support of the Arab Administrative Development Organisation (ARADO) and covers the following countries: Algeria, Egypt, Morocco, the Palestinian Authority, Jordan, Lebanon, Tunisia, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen.

Published on November 27, 2014


Foreword and acknowledgements
Acronyms and abbreviations
Executive summary
Assessment and recommendations
Towards women's empowerment in public life in the MENA region
Towards gender-responsive laws and policies in the MENA region
MENA government tools for gender equality
Embedding gender considerations in public policies across the MENA region
Women in political decision making and public life in MENA countries
Female participation in the labour force across the MENA region
Equality and judicial protection in family relations
Annexes2 chapters available
Family law and the principle of equality across the MENA region
Legislation on violence against women in MENA countries
Powered by OECD iLibrary