Women exclusion is a complex and multi-dimensional phenomenon that describes a state in which women are unable to participate fully in economic, social, political, and cultural life, as well as the process(es) leading to, and sustaining such a state.
Gender inequality in the Arab Region is among the highest in the world according to international indicators (such as the Global Gender Gap Index ) and is a primary driver of women exclusion. However, women’s exclusion stems also from several forms of discrimination. In many cities of the region, and to varying degrees, sexism is compounded by discriminations based among others on geographic location, class, race, disability, age, religion, and ideology.
All are grounds for women’s exclusion. Tackling gender gaps and enhancing women’s inclusion greatly increases the social value of cities. Women-inclusive cities have the potential to liberate women from discrimination and gender-based violence, point to bright futures for girls, offer comfort to elderly women, provide the needed support to women with disabilities, and welcome women migrants coming to Arab cities with hopes of creating new opportunities and forging new lives for themselves and their families.
Beyond growth, realizing the social value of cities through equal opportunities for women and vulnerable groups requires a transformative change towards people-centered policies and programs rooted in the ideals of sustainable and inclusive urban development.
This platform is part of the Axis 1 "Strengthening the capacities of equality actors" of the Priority Solidarity Fund "Women for the future in the Mediterranean" funded by the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs and led by the European Institute of the Mediterranean, in the framework of the project “Developing Women's Empowerment” labelled by the Union for the Mediterranean.