KAGIDER/Erdem: 70 percent of women in Turkey are out of the workforce

The results of the report titled “Women’s Participation in the Labor Force in Turkey: General Trends, Regional and Demographic Differences, Attitudes” prepared in cooperation with Sabancı University and the Turkish Women Entrepreneurs Association (KAGIDER) were shared with the public.

According to the Sabancı University statement, the report contains important findings on the current situation of women’s labor force participation in Turkey, economic, social and demographic differences between regions and their transformation over time.

The opening speeches of the event held at Sabancı University Altunizade Digital Campus were made by KAGIDER President Emine Erdem and Sabancı University Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Dean Meltem Müftüler Baç.

According to the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) Household Labor Force Surveys 2021 data included in the report, the labor force participation rate of 15 and over in Turkey is 51.4 percent; this rate is 70.3 percent for men and only 32.8 percent for women. Women’s labor force participation rates in Turkey are much higher than the OECD average. under staying.

Based on the idea that it is important to reveal the current situation and the transformation over time with data for an in-depth study of the barriers to women’s participation in the workforce, the report presents descriptive statistics created using the 2018 results of the TUIK Household Labor Force Survey and World Values ​​Survey.

The economic reasons for the change in women’s employment and labor force participation in the last 15 years are discussed in the light of data. In addition, attitudes towards gender equality are examined according to demographic characteristics and its relationship with women’s labor force participation is discussed.

Considering the quality and skill demands of the jobs in which women are employed in the report, it is seen that employment in high-quality jobs has decreased and employment in low-skilled jobs has increased in the last ten years; the negative impact of the pandemic on labor force participation is higher for women than for men, and the negative impact of the pandemic increases as the education level of women increases; the increase in the number of universities increases the education level of women, but the sectoral differences in the employment of high school graduate women draw attention; One out of every three young women in Istanbul is neither in employment nor in education; There is a parallelism between the attitudes towards women’s participation in the paid workforce and their participation in the workforce.

In the report, which noted that while female employment in unskilled jobs increased by 3 percent between 2004 and 2021, female employment in jobs requiring qualification decreased from 21 percent to 11 percent. It is below the average of OECD countries.

“We believe that the report will make significant contributions to business development in Turkey”

Sabancı University Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Dean Meltem Müftüler Baç, whose views were included in the statement, stated that the world and Turkey are going through very difficult times.

Müftüler Baç said, “There are many different problems brought about by the ongoing process with Kovid-19, the Russia-Ukraine war and the global economic crisis. Some of these are also reflected in this report. We think it will.” made the statement.

KAGIDER President Emine Erdem said, “According to the labor force statistics for the first quarter of 2023 announced by TUIK on May 17, only 11 million 857 thousand of 32 million 934 thousand women of working age in our country are in the workforce today.” used the phrases.

Erdem made the following assessments:

“As we enter the 100th anniversary of our Republic in 2023, 70% of women are out of the workforce. We know that there are many obstacles among the reasons why women are not included in the workforce, but gender inequality, gender roles and stereotypes are the most important obstacles to women’s entry into business life. We know that poverty will decrease and there will be a richer world, as they continue to stay in the country and reach equal opportunities in both society and companies.

For strong, sustainable and inclusive development; The full and equal participation of women and men in all areas of social life, women taking the place they deserve in working life, active participation in the workforce and having a say in production play a key role. The outputs of the report show us the next picture more clearly. When we can see the problems clearly, we can work for the right solutions.”

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