The gender gap in the country’s economic structures remains stubbornly high, with only 14.4% of women participating in the labor market. Women face the lowest level of employment in Europe and, even more shockingly, only 21.5% are active in the labor force, which means that most are not even looking for a job.
However, various researches and reports show that a considerable number of people remain outside the official statistics, working in the informal sector. Although accurate data is hard to find, women — working as tailors, house cleaners, hairdressers or seasonal farm workers — make up a large part of the informal workforce. Lacking contracts, most informal workers receive low wages with no social welfare benefits.
Traditional notions and beliefs about adequate professions for women and men continue to have a concrete impact on women’s employment opportunities. For example, women in Kosovo continue to be overrepresented in education and healthcare while the energy sector is still a male dominated field.
A greater representation of women has been observed in political life, where the number of women winning the position of MP is increasing with each election . In addition, the new government that emerged from the February 14 elections has stated that it aims at equal representation in institutions: such an initiative has been confirmed through a decision in recent months for equal participation in public boards.
The unemployment of women and the exploitation of those who have a job is slowing down the path to equality and social justice. For this reason, in our next discussion within the Lokomotiva’s program, on August 26 at 17:30, on Hub 2.0 (Kosovo 2.0 office) we will ask:
What factors are contributing to long-term stagnation in the growth of women’s employment? How does discrimination at work affect women’s public and private lives? How much do traditional ideas about professions affect these dynamics in the labor market?
To launch the discussion we have invited:
- Luljeta Demolli, executive director at the Kosovo Center for Gender Studies
- Saxhide Mustafa, deputy director at Riinvest Institute
There will be English and Serbian translations.
This event is sponsored by the Prince Claus Fund.