Saudi Arabia is taking major and new steps for social modernization with reforms to engage its youth and women in shaping a more sustainable future for Saudi Arabia. It has been indeed several multi-layered and multi-scale challenges to perform such ice-breaking changes in the social fabrics of a society that emanated from deep rooted cultural traditions. While, it may seem simple, easy and straightforward for any outsiders to think that such changes can be done overnight, it is in reality a tectonic social transformation for Saudi Arabia to do such changes, it is also of historic dimensions.
The MENA region, in this context, is taking major steps towards more open socio-economic and social reforms to join the global trends in the path to modern sustainable societies. As the three pillars of true sustainability involve environment, economic and social issues, all these can not be solved and implemented all at the same time. It is a long and gradual process that can not be faster or kept shorter.
The decision of allowing Saudi women to drive comes amid a broad reform program that last week led to women being allowed into a sports stadium for the first time. This is also in parallel of many other long-term and large-scale reforms, vision 2030, to move away from being dependent on oil, to diversify the economy of the country, invest in infra-structure, in women and youth, health, education and the labor market in general.