Employment promotion

Assessing informality and vulnerability among disadvantaged groups of Lebanese, and Syrian and Palestinian refugees in Lebanon

The ILO has conducted an Informal Economy and Vulnerability study, targeting the most vulnerable populations among Lebanese, Syrian Refugees and Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon to provide currently unavailable information on the supply and demand sides of Lebanon’s labour market.

While the effects of the Syrian Refugee Crisis have increasingly spilled over into the economic and social spheres of Lebanon, leading to increased vulnerability and deteriorating working and living conditions among Palestinian and Syrian refugees and host communities, the recent compounded crises, including the COVID-19 pandemic, the economic and financial crisis and the Beirut port blast of August 2020, have further exacerbated the situation. However, credible data remain limited, rendering it difficult to accurately assess the situation and identify the labour market challenges faced by the different vulnerable populations in Lebanon.

Against this backdrop, this ILO project aims to assess the level of vulnerability and informality among the three different population groups, both men and women, and provide policy recommendations to support formalization and improved employment and labour market prospects. In turn, the project aims to help shape efforts by key policymakers to develop inclusive policies and response strategies that promote non-discrimination and decent work for all.


  • Provide currently unavailable data and information on the characteristics of informality and the level of vulnerability amongst the most deprived Lebanese, and Syrian and Palestinian refugees in Lebanon.
  • Contribute to a better design of future policies, practices and interventions targeting refugees and host communities based on empirics and an analytical assessment.


  • Data and analysis on the situation of the most vulnerable Lebanese, and Syrian and Palestinian refugees in Lebanon are provided.
  • Findings of the study are disseminated for awareness raising and policy influence.

Main Activities

  • Conduct a household survey targeting 5,000 households of Lebanese, and Syrian and Palestinian refugees in the most vulnerable cadasters in eight Lebanese governorates.
  • Conduct Focus Group Discussions, with tripartite constituents and other stakeholders to identify sectors and occupations with potential for decent job creation for host communities and vulnerable refugees.
  • Develop a comprehensive report with conclusions and policy recommendations.
  • Disseminate findings and advocate for their consideration in future policy making.