DIFI participates in a “Confronting Social Problems” seminar

Organized by the Executive Bureau of the Council of Ministers of Labour and Social Affairs in GCC states, Doha International Family Institute (DIFI) participated in a seminar on “Confronting Social Problems”, held in Manama, Bahrain, from 4 to 6 May 2014.

Dr .Mohamed Mohieddin, Director of Family Research Division, and Researcher Thani Al Mudahka represented the Institute at the Seminar; Dr Mohamed Mohieddin presented a paper that raised considerable debate on the issue of divorce at a different level to that commonly dealt with in the literature.

Titled “The Wrest of Halal: Towards a new perspective for Studying Divorce in GCC Countries”, Dr. Mohieddin’s paper attempts to take a deeper look into the macro level societal implications of divorce in the GCC region according to the available surveys and studies. The paper also criticized the tendency of divorce studies to focus only on the direct consequences on the family that is disintegrated by divorce (divorced spouses and their children) and called to consider this issue from a broader point of view by focusing on issues such as: the impact of divorce on fertility and hence the reproduction of labor force, its impact on social protection systems, housing and legal services, and the environmental impacts.

Reviewing the international literature on divorce, the paper stresses the need for an integrated approach to study divorce in GCC countries that combines both micro and macro level impacts of divorce in one theoretical framework and adopts a unified methodology.

The seminar concluded with the following recommendations for DIFI to act upon:

1. Conduct a survey of the incidence of divorce in GCC countries, which adopts a unified methodology, to measure the individual, familial and societal impacts of divorce. To be carried out through collaboration between the Executive Bureau of the Council of Ministers of Labour and Social Affairs in GCC states and DIFI.

2. Prepare a regional report on challenges confronting the family and its problems in GCC states, through co-operation between the Executive Bureau and organizations and research centers concerned with the family in the GCC states.