June 17, 2012


In December 1996, the Center for Strategic Studies at the University of Jordan conducted a field survey on unemployment in Jordan. The Center’s Economic Studies Unit published the main results of the study in 1997. This study was different in its methodology and interests from other official studies on the subject, and was consistent with the standards of the International Labor Organization.

The Center’s study sheds light on many variables related to the issue of unemployment in Jordan, the relations of which had not yet been examined at that time. Among these variables are the characteristics and behaviors of the unemployed during their search for work, and their tendency to attend training courses in order to improve their skills and competitiveness to obtain job opportunities. The study also focused on the tendency of the unemployed to do private jobs and the financial, skill and procedural obstacles they face in this regard. The study also paid attention to the frustration variable that results in the reluctance of some unemployed people to search for work, followed by their exit from the labor force.

Objectives of the study “Unemployment in Jordan 2001”

There is no doubt that this study will benefit from the conclusions of the National Conference for Employment and Combating Unemployment that was held on 9/20/98, and the numerous seminars and discussion panels, which stimulated the holding of some of them in the previous study in 1996. On this basis, this study will adopt a new, flexible approach that enables the review of Calculating the unemployment rate according to several methodologies consistent with the standards of the International Labor Organization. With this approach, it is also easy to formulate a methodology with national (Jordanian) specificity supported by appropriate analysis.

The idea of ​​working on developing a national methodology for measuring unemployment and studying its implications emerged during a panel discussion held at the invitation of the Finance Committee of the House of Representatives, attended by representatives of the Center for Strategic Studies, and other experts.

On 4/5/2000, a workshop was held at the Center for Strategic Studies to discuss the basis for selecting and weighing the criteria of the national methodology for studying unemployment. During the discussion, the criterion of working hours, the criterion of the period of searching for work, the criterion of the period of availability or readiness to work, and the issue of working age and its most appropriate extent in Jordan were also discussed. The discussion was attended by a group of experts, thinkers and decision-makers, including His Excellency the President, Engineer Ali Abu Al-Ragheb, His Excellency Dr. Mohieldin Touq, His Excellency Dr. Munther Al-Masry, and others. At the conclusion of the workshop meeting, an elite group was formed to supervise the study, and all the attendees agreed to be members of it.

In addition to the main objective mentioned above, there are other research objectives that the study aims to achieve, which fall within three fields, as follows:

A- The field of working personnel:

  1. Work turnover rate.
  2. job satisfaction.
  3. Underutilization of work force.
  4. On-the-job training and skills development.
  5. plurality of business.

B- The field of unemployed individuals:

  1. Reasons for leaving work.
  2. Job search methods.
  3. Reliable factors to get a job opportunity.
  4. Training and skill development during downtime.
  5. Knowledge, communication and benefit from institutions to combat unemployment and poverty.
  6. The nature of the relationship between unemployment and education.
  7. Obstacles to doing private work.
  8. Desirable and undesirable works.

C- The field of economically inactive individuals:

  1. Reasons for not looking for work
  2. Women’s job opportunities.
  3. Juvenile employment (under working age)

It is worth noting that some aspects of the aforementioned goals (4a, 4b, 6b, 2c, 3c) are close in content to what was identified in the book of the High Mandate to form a government.

The study sample

The sample size of the study is 9000 families. It is designed according to a multi-stage stratified style, drawn from a general framework that includes all residential units in the Kingdom. It is valid to represent the population at the level of the Kingdom, urban, rural, and governorates.

Initial report

The initial report is issued three weeks after field data collection, audit, and computer entry are completed. The preliminary report contains the main findings, and is within 30 pages.


The data is ready and available to researchers who wish to use it. It is expected that valuable research will be carried out for these researchers, who may work alone or within contracts they conclude with the Center. This research addresses the topics listed within the objectives of the study in the fields of economic, social, and psychological sciences