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Jordan's rapid urbanisation since the 1960s has lacked inclusive planning, resulting in high investment costs and unequal access to economic opportunities, particularly for vulnerable groups. Overlooking cultural heritage in urban development hinders resilience and knowledge potential.
Women play a crucial role in conserving cultural heritage, being central to community networks and household activities. Their expertise in construction techniques and cultural practices is invaluable, but this knowledge risks being lost without its transfer to other women.
Given that women often serve as repositories of local culture and knowledge, their inclusion in developing strategies for preserving both intangible and tangible heritage is essential for safeguarding cultural diversity. Despite their significance, the perspective of women in preserving and transmitting cultural heritage is frequently overlooked.
To address this challenge Cities Alliance organised a participatory workshop on 26 September 2023, in Madaba, Jordan. Partnering with the municipality and governorate, the workshop engaged institutions like the Department of Tourism and Antiquities, the Madaba Institute for Mosaic Art and Restoration (MIMAR), and civil society organisations.
Participants assessed the potential for women's empowerment in Madaba's tourism and heritage sector, addressing existing barriers to enhance economic opportunities for women.
The workshop applied the Cities Alliance Women’s Engagement in Cities (WEC) Framework for systematic qualitative data collection and active stakeholder engagement. This report summarises the approach and its results.
Cities Alliance will collaborate with the municipality, governorate, and civil society to implement the workshop’s recommendations, contributing to its broader engagement in the MENA region on women's socio-economic empowerment.