Like the rest of the Gulf, Qatar has been struggling to shore up its public sector with qualified nationals.
In a recent Financial Times op-ed, two consultants advocated a novel approach: invest in Khaleeji women.
In many GCC markets, female nationals represent a better-educated talent pool than the population at large. Women in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Qatar comprise 67 per cent, 57 per cent, and 56 per cent of graduates.
But the percentage of women in the labour force in GCC countries is significantly lower than in other countries: whereas 79 per cent of women are in the workforce in countries including Norway and Switzerland, that number drops to 35 per cent in Qatar, 28 per cent in the UAE, and 12 per cent in Saudi Arabia…
Male-dominated workplaces and the cultural push for women to go into a limited number of fields, such as education and healthcare, help explain this disparity.
But down the line, GCC companies that recruit, develop and retain more female Khaleejis will definitely have a competitive edge, the analysts assert.
Keeping in mind that three out of four Qatar University graduates last week were female, what do you guys think of this argument?