The last two decades Albania has undergone tremendous changes after ending a 40 years of self isolation under a communist regime and opening its gates to the global economy. This process has been long and slow and is still under way. During the communist rule the percentage of women in politics has been high but not substantive since women didn’t have real power and were not in position of decision-making. After the collapse of communism the state was facing a crisis of moral values, anarchy, missing the rule of law and corruption of both public administration and justice authorities. Women were pushed aside the political scene, the challenges were others and women were once again voiceless. After the first democratic elections in the 1990’s the economic situation deteriorated and many people fled the county, some tricked into human trafficking in search of work and a better life. However, economic situation has improved since the 1990’s. The Albanian Diaspora has demonstrated a significant role in this issue. The money that they send back home goes towards building homes and looking after other family members. On the other hand, they are wary of setting up businesses at home where there are still many challenges ahead. Country’s poor infrastructure, unreliable energy supplies and contradictory rights upon land create problems to a functional market economy. Women participation in public life has increased gradually since more women receive higher education and look for a balance between their career and their family life. It is a real struggle for women in big cities and it is even more difficult for women in remote rural areas who due to prejudices cannot get a better education. Their only path is to get married in an early age and create a family depended to the backbone of the traditional Albanian society, the men as in many other societies. Usually those women are vulnerable and their opportunities of further education and a job are limited.

Albania that has had the lowest percentage of women in politics (the lowest in Europe) adopted the quota of 30%. Only with the last elections in 2009 did the women come in the scene again. I know it is just a number that was not reached but is a good start for those women to raise their voice and strengthen their role to the society.

From my part I want to do the same, raising my voice to gather support for more action and sharing my concerns with other women there. Staying abreast of critical issues both nationally and internationally, participating in forums like World Pulse and enriching my knowledge drawing on the experiences of peers from around the world.

Take action! This post was submitted in response to Voices of Our Future Application: Challenges and Solutions to Creating Change.

Comment on this Post


Thank you, Aida! You are a strong woman and you will surely make a change. You are positive and able to use the experiences of the past and the lessons learnt to build a better and more sustainable and equal future for women in your country. Thank you for your inspiration. Peace to you Eliana


Aida ! accept my wholehearted gratitude for sharing this post. I am intrigued when hear stories of change in economic systems i.e communism to capitalism. These decades sudden changes really bring about a chaos and uncertainty. I am glad to know Albanian Diaspora community is contributing to their society. Hope you can post more information and stories!

Aida, I enjoyed reading your post and learned a lot from it! I think you do a great job of taking a specific issue you are passionate about and interweaving your opinions with the facts. You did a good job of articulating the challenges to women's political involvement and roles in public life. You mention education as a solution to helping women enter the political scene, etc. I think you can elaborate on higher education and how women are benefiting from it. I was left wondering what specific political issues women are focusing on. I also wanted to know more about how you plan to raise your voice and gather support. Will you primarily be using PulseWire and/or other online communities? Do you plan on gathering more women to join online communities in Albania? I think you're doing a wonderful job of sharing current issues with the world and making your voice heard!

Thank you for sharing! Sincerely, Lisa

Hello Aida! I'm one of the listeners for your Week Three assignment and I enjoyed reading your journal entry. It sounds like some progress has been made with regards to giving voice to underrepresented women in Albania but there is still much to be done. I understand how your work with Vote Women In Politics is how you are currently addressing the challenges and barriers for women to serve in the government of your country. But I was wanting to learn more specifics about how you see the possibility of using PulseWire and other online communities to overcome these challenges. For your remaining VOF journal entry, I encourage you to share your passion to harness the power of the Internet to influence political and social change. Keep up the good work! Your friend, Valerie

Dear Aida,

From reading your entry, I have gained a better understanding of the transition of which Albania is in the midst. It is gratifying that at least there is a quota established for the number of women in politics.

Congratulations on finding World Pulse and a larger forum for publicizing and finding solutions for the women in your country.

Your sister in the US, Jan

Jan Askin