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The Status of Women in the Middle East and North Africa project's overall goal to improve the status of women in the broader MENA region by strengthening local NGO capacity to effectively advocate on behalf of women has used nationally-representative survey data collected by IFES and partnering local survey firms.

Recognizing the lack of credible, up-to-date and relevant survey data available to women's NGO's for advocacy campaigns, academics, and governments alike, the SWMENA team began assessing missing and needed data analysis in Lebanon, Morocco, and Yemen. IFES and the Institute for Women's Policy Research (IWPR) used IWPR's Status of the Women in the States project to model the Status of Women in the Middle East and North Africa.

After extensive consultations with local members of NGOs, parliament, and academics in all three countries, IWPR and IFES' Applied Research Center began developing a set of comparative and country specific questions to survey women and men. The surveys were then implemented by Statistics Lebanon, Moroccan survey firm LMS-CSA, and the Yemen Polling Center between August 2009 and June 2010.

The survey questions were constructed based on four distinct research areas: political, civic, and economic participation and well-being; social attitudes towards women's roles, violence, and reforming laws; social autonomy (access to education, role in household decision-making, and control over household resources); and health and education.

All surveys were nationally representative and interviews were conducted face-to-face with the population over 18 years of age. There is an oversample of women in order to have a large enough sample across ages, education levels, urban/rural residents, and other demographic segments so that robust comparison can be made amongst them. The smaller sample of men was used to allow gender disaggregation of the data.


Survey fieldwork occurred in Lebanon between August 7 and 29, 2009, with a total sample size of 2,000 women and 750 men.


Survey fieldwork occurred in Morocco between December 9, 2009 and January 21, 2010, with a total sample size of 2,000 women and 500 men.


Survey fieldwork occurred in Yemen between June 5 and June 26, 2010, with a total of 1,993 women and 508 men.


To find out more about the methodology for a specific country, and to see an analysis of demographics, visit the Demographics Overview