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Unmet Need for The Utilization of Women’s Labor - Findings from Three Impoverished Communities in Outer Beirut, Lebanon


  • Marwan Khawaja

    () (Center for Research on Population and Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon)

  • Rozzet Jurdi
  • Shireen Assaf
  • Joumana Yeretzian


This paper examines cause-specific labor force non-participation among women living in three impoverished communities on the outskirts of Beirut, Lebanon. It uses an expanded labor force utilization framework, separating the socially discouraged from other labor nonparticipants. This study is based on data from a sample survey of some 2699 households, carried out in 2002. The analysis is limited to women between the ages of 15-59 which yields a total of 3813 women, 9% of whom reported to be socially discouraged from seeking employment. Descriptive and bivariate analysis of the affect of the independent variables chosen is first investigated. A multinomial logit model is then fitted to the data in order to uncover the impact of individual and household characteristics on the socially discouraged group as well as women labor force participation. The focus is on covariates pertaining to both women respondents and their spouses (heads of household in other household domains), but several other human-capital, demographic and socio-economic factors are also included. Our findings overall indicate a strong influence of social and demographic factors on discouragement. These include residence, marital status, households with children and experience. Surprisingly, education of the household head and women, presence of children and income have no noticeable influence on social discouragement.

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  • Marwan Khawaja & Rozzet Jurdi & Shireen Assaf & Joumana Yeretzian, 2009. "Unmet Need for The Utilization of Women’s Labor - Findings from Three Impoverished Communities in Outer Beirut, Lebanon," Working Papers 494, Economic Research Forum, revised Jun 2009.
  • Handle: RePEc:erg:wpaper:494

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Parrado, Emilio A., 2002. "Socioeconomic Context, Family Regimes, and Women's Early Labor Market Experience: The Case of Colombia and Venezuela," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 799-816, May.
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    3. Debra Anne Donahoe, 1999. "Measuring Women's Work in Developing Countries," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 25(3), pages 543-576.
    4. Miles, Rebecca, 2002. "Employment and Unemployment in Jordan: The Importance of the Gender System," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 413-427, March.
    5. Sulayman Al-Qudsi, 1998. "Labour participation of Arab women: estimates of the fertility to labour supply link," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 30(7), pages 931-941.
    6. Falaris, Evangelos M, 1995. "The Role of Selectivity Bias in Estimates of the Rate of Return to Schooling: The Case of Married Women in Venezuela," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 43(2), pages 333-350, January.
    7. Gary S. Becker, 1975. "Human Capital: A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis, with Special Reference to Education, Second Edition," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number beck75-1, January.
    8. Psacharopoulos, George & Tzannatos, Zafiris, 1993. "Economic and Demographic Effects on Working Women in Latin America," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 6(4), pages 293-315, November.
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