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Shifting Narratives: Towards Economic and Political Empowerment of Women in Lebanon

Background and Rationale

Lebanon has a host of well-educated, talented, and smart women, who are ready to contribute to the economic recovery and participate in political life. For instance, the International Labour Organisation estimates that the GDP will grow by 9% if the gap in labor market participation between men and women is reduced by 25%. Implementing policies allowing women to participate equally in the economy is not just about social justice – it is about getting the economy right and would have a significant macroeconomic impact. Women are underrepresented in the political and economic spheres, especially in leadership positions.

The participation of women in the Lebanese labor market is among the lowest in the world. According to a recent report by The World Bank, only 26 percent of women in Lebanon are employed, with the majority being the youth who have more access to education compared to women that belong to older age groups. Similarly, the rate of women’s political participation in Lebanon remains very low, with females comprising only 6 percent of the Lebanese parliamentarians. This rate has seen no significant progress compared to the 2018 elections, as the number of females elected in the Lebanese parliament in 2022 saw only a 2.02 percent increase according to a monitoring report published by The Lebanese Association for Democratic Elections (LADE).

The Nordic Embassies in Lebanon, namely Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden, and the Asfari Institute for Civil Society and Citizenship, have joined forces in this project that aims at increasing women’s political and economic empowerment and representation in Lebanon through targeted advocacy and by identifying new political initiatives. It also further strengthens the current strong Nordic collaboration on gender issues in Lebanon.   


  1. Empowering and informing current and future females in politics on a national and municipal level in Lebanon
  2. Increasing awareness about the importance of the economic empowerment of women in Lebanon
  3. ​Contributing to creating a safe space for women in politics to share their experiences to better understand and highlight the challenges that they face in the Lebanese political sphere

Project Activities

Asfari Institute for Civil Society and Citizenship

American University of Beirut


PO Box 11-0236

Riad El Solh, ​1107 2020
Beirut, Lebanon

Tel: +961-1-350000 EXT. 4469


The Debs Center, 3 Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, 8th floor
New York, NY 10017-2303, USA

Tel: 1-212-583-7600

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