Localization of human resources in the State of Qatar: Emerging issues and research agenda

Justin Williams, Bhanugopan Ramudu, Alan Fish

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)
602 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose - This paper provides an overview of the concept of 'localization' of human resources in Qatar. Relative to the rest of the Gulf Cooperation Council Countries, economic development began late in Qatar due to political and economic factors such as influx of immigrant labour force and changes in education system. Now, with one of the fastest growing economies in the world; and the highest per capita income, Qatar has vigorously embraced rapid economic expansion. However; in a small country awash with natural resources, and with a population engulfed by expatriates, the issue of "localization" is a pressing economic and social issue.Design/methodology/approach - This paper reviews the national human resource situation in this atypical context; and seeks to determine the factors that impact 'localization' in this small, yet important Gulf Nation.Findings - There are some common barriers to 'localization' throughout the the Gulf Cooperation Council Countries (GCCCs). These can be summarised as; (i) an inefficient quota system, (ii) a culture that is focused more on prestige than performance, (iii) strict cultural practices concerning women in the workforce, (iv) education systems that are not market driven, and (v) an inequitable social contract and distribution of oil and natural gas wealth in the GCCCs.Originality/value - While much attention been directed to the concept of 'localization' in developing countries, "Qatarization" has received no attention in scholarly literature, despite the resounding political and economic role that Qatar has in the GCCCs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-206
Number of pages14
JournalEducation, Business and Society: Contemporary Middle Eastern Issues
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2011


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