Women in Political Life

Women in Jordan enjoy a wide range of economic, social and political rights. Jordan is keen on empowering women in all fields, especially in the political sphere, and has drafted most of the laws that govern political life to enable women to reach decision-making and other influential positions. Women have held numerous cabinet positions throughout Jordan’s governments, with some reaching the level of Deputy Prime Minster.

Women in Parliament

o   Jordan’s Parliamentary elections in January 2013 featured the participation of 121 female candidates from across the Kingdom’s various governorates and districts.

o   Under Jordan’s Election Law, passed in 2012, 15 parliamentary seats are guaranteed to be held by women. Women are not limited to this quota and can compete at both the constituency level and the national level to win a larger number of parliamentary seats.

o   The January 2013 elections marked the strongest political participation by women in the history of Jordan. 51.8% of voters and 16.7% of candidates during these elections were women.   

o   18 women were elected to serve in Jordan’s 17th parliament. An analytical study by the Jordan Parliament Monitor showed that the elections witnessed significantly improved levels of competition among female candidates that was reflected in the victory of female candidates in local districts.

o   191 women ran for election; 105 on the constituency level and 86 are under national lists.

o   Surveys and statistics show that women’s participation in the elections through voting is around 51.8%.

o    The National Coalition to Support Women, comprised of a number of women's organizations, has been holding a series of workshops to empower and train female candidates for parliament and to strengthen their leadership roles.

o   The current Upper House has 6 female senators

Women in Municipal Council

o   Women are allocated a quota of 25% of the seats in municipal councils.

o   Jordan has undertaken a strategic plan for the years 2013 through 2017 developed to provide support and assistance to women in the upcoming municipal elections, with a focus on training in community leadership.

Women in Political Parties

o   Two of Jordan’s political parties are led by women and Jordan’s Political Parties Law requires political organizations applying for a political party license to demonstrate that at least 10% of members are women.

o   The new Political Parties Law requires political organizations applying for a political party licence to demonstrate that at least 10% of members are women. 

Women in the Workforce

o   Jordan’s Ministry of Labor has announced a national initiative aimed at creating job opportunities for women, including programs to promote opportunities that allow working from home..

o   The Microfund for Women received the Women’s World Banking’s 2013 Excellence in LeadershipAward, supported by Citi Foundation. The Microfund for Women is a leading Jordanian microfinance institution in the field of promoting gender diversity. 

o   Women are an increasingly important part of Jordan’s economic landscape. The number of Jordanian women obtaining university degrees currently outpaces men, and 37% of the start-ups supported by Jordanian incubator Oasis500 are led by women.