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The roles and contributions of Emirati women have been acknowledged even before nationalization of the UAE. Women were considered the backbone of society, entrusted with managing families while men were away during pearling season or on trading expeditions. It was no wonder that the leadership of the UAE provided a clear pathway for Emirati women to gain access to education and contribute to society outside the home if they so desired. In recent years, the leadership of the country has gone to even greater lengths to incorporate Emirati women into the workforce by studying reasons for female nonparticipation in the workplace including difficulties maintaining an acceptable home and work life balance. To address the findings of labor market studies, policies to attract more Emirati women into the workforce were developed and implemented. This chapter describes the roles and contributions of Emirati women to the society and economy of the UAE and emphasizes the commitment of the UAE government to educate and provide economic opportunities to Emirati women.
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