The past decade has been particularly challenging for Jordan. The spillovers of the global economic crisis in 2009 were followed by an unprecedented refugee influx caused by the war that started in 2011 in neighbouring Syria. In 2019, Jordan’s population passed the 10 million mark, reflecting a growth of 64 per cent over the last 10 years, with refuges and migrants constituting no less than 30 per cent of the entire population in the country. 

However, this rapid and unanticipated increase in population, coupled with the ongoing economic challenges, has placed an additional pressure on the Jordanian labour market. Unemployment rose from 12.7 per cent in 2008 to 18.6 per cent in 2018. At the same time, the number of jobs created every year decreased from approximately 70,000 in 2008 to less than 54,000 in 2017. Alongside these losses, many job vacancies remain unfilled because of the skills mismatch and working conditions that are considered undesirable. These conditions are most prevalent in non-academic technical and vocational streams. Given the rising unemployment, skills mismatch and shortage of good quality jobs, there is a great need to expand and improve TVET system and programmes across the country. 

To address these challenges, the Jordanian Government has placed a very big emphasis on reforming the TVET sector in an effort to bridge the gap between education and employment and to equip young Jordanians with the skills that are most needed in the labour market. More specifically, the National Strategy for Human Resource Development (NSHRD) 2016-2015 pays particular attention to reforming TVET in Jordan. It involves strengthening the relevance of TVET, enhancing the quality of training and education in the sector, introducing private sector governance structures (e.g. Sector Skills Councils) and, finally, breaking the negative stigma around TVET. Major progress on the NSHRD has already been achieved, including the endorsement of a National Qualification Framework and the establishment of the Technical and Vocational Skills Development Commission. 

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Skills and labour market transitions for refugees and host communities
Publication Date: 17 May 2022
Source: Bilateral organizations-United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), International Labour Organization (ILO), Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and Finn Church Aid (FCA), ILO

This study is a joint collaboration of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), International Labour Organization (ILO), Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and Finn Church Aid (FCA) to identify good practices related to access to Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) programmes for refugees and internally displaced people (IDPs), as well as their host communities, and their transition to the labour market.

The study reviews TVET systems and programmes implemented by national ministries, private sector actors, development agencies and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) across five countries - Ethiopia, Jordan, Kenya, Sudan and Uganda – prior to and during the COVID-19 pandemic, which has created additional challenges for the livelihoods and inclusion of forcibly displaced people around the world.

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Skills development and improved productivity ecosystems: Upgrading informal apprenticeships in Jordan’s car garages
Publication Date: 11 Apr 2022
Source: ILO

In March 2021, the International Labour Organization (ILO) Governing Body unanimously endorsed the Productivity Ecosystem for Decent Work (hereafter referred to as “Productivity Ecosystem”). The Productivity Ecosystem is an approach that works at the firm, sector and policy level to systematically identify key productivity bottlenecks faced by micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and address them in an integrated and sustainable manner. The approach has been developed based on the ILO’s previous work and programmes to improve productivity and decent work for MSMEs.

This case study is part of a broader series that seeks to shed light on key drivers of inclusive productivity growth and to showcase how the ILO has helped strengthen those drivers. Concrete examples are presented of how the ILO facilitated or promoted change that led to positive impact on productivity and decent work, especially for MSMEs. The case study series zooms in on skills development as a key driver for a well-functioning productivity ecosystems for decent work. Specifically, the below case study of an ILO-led upgraded informal apprenticeship programme in Jordan’s car servicing and maintenance sector finds that such apprenticeship schemes impact the skills of young apprentices, thereby improving their employability and the productivity of participating MSMEs.  

Briefing notes
Research Brief: Note on the findings of a tracer study of RPL beneficiaries in Jordan
Publication Date: 09 Feb 2022
Source: ILO
This research brief summarizes the findings of a tracer study of beneficiaries of the ILO-supported Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) Scheme in Jordan. The scheme contributed to the implementation of the Jordan Compact by allowing beneficiaries to have their skills recognised, providing access to an occupational license, and therefore becoming eligible for a work permit. The tracer study explored the impact of the scheme on Syrian beneficiaries in the construction sector who participated between 2016 and 2018. The results presented in this note were taken from a combination of individual interviews and a survey of 352 RPL beneficiaries which was conducted in July 2019.
Call for Expression of Interest in professional training in Career Guidance
Publication Date: 06 Oct 2021
Source: Academic institutions-University of Malta

On-line, part-time Master in Lifelong Career Guidance specifically for the MENA region


Career guidance (or ‘vocational guidance’) has been adopted in several countries in the world because it:

  • helps young people and adults choose their educational and employment pathways more wisely;
  • leads to appropriate choices that ensure more motivated students and more productive and satisfied workers;
  • facilitates a better match between the demand and supply of skills.


Career guidance services are greatly needed in the MENA region. They can be part of the strategy to address the twin challenge of high youth and adult unemployment on the one hand, and skills gaps on the other. They can also foster social inclusion through giving access to a livelihood.


The University of Malta – with the expert support of the European Training Foundation (ETF), the International Labour Organization (ILO), and the UNESCO-UNITWIN Network – has issued a Call for the Expression of Interest for those who would like to receive professional training in career guidance.


The Master course is designed in such a way as to

  • take into account the economic, labour market, educational and cultural realities of the MENA region;
  • provide participants with the interdisciplinary theoretical background and practical experience needed in order to design, deliver, and evaluate lifelong career guidance services;
  • promote regional expertise in policy development, systems-building, and practitioner competence. 


Individuals as well as public and private entities interested in the Masters can



Scholarships, in the form of partial fee waivers, are being offered by the University of Malta to deserving applicants.