Blogs and Think Pieces by Keyword - Labour
- COVID-19 Sends the Care Economy Deeper into Crisis Mode (4 May 2020) | Silke Staab
The COVID-19 crisis puts the fragility of the care economy into sharp relief. Women comprise 70% of health workers globally and even higher shares of care-related occupations such as nursing, midwifery and community health work, which all require close contact with patients. The risks these front-line workers take to save lives are compounded by poor working conditions, low pay and lack of voice in health systems where medical leadership is largely controlled by men.
- The Future of Work in the Post-Covid-19 Digital Era (8 Apr 2020) | Maria Mexi
The coronavirus crisis has spurred the growth of online work. The genie is not going back in the bottle and we must plan for a future of "decent digiwork".
- La promoción de cooperativas como política de inclusión por el trabajo en Argentina. Desafíos en el escenario socio-económico y político actual (7 Mar 2019) | Malena Victoria Hopp
Desde 2003 se implementaron en Argentina programas de generación de cooperativas como estrategia de inclusión por el trabajo. Este ensayo analiza las potencialidades de estos programas y explora qué sucede cuando se les elimina, como ocurrió luego del cambio de gobierno en 2015. La nueva orientación de política pública debilitó el apoyo al trabajo cooperativo y favoreció la concentración de poder, derivada de la unificación de la elite política y económica. El reemplazo de cooperativas por transferencias de ingresos rompe con los espacios colectivos de trabajo y contribuye a profundizar desigualdades, mediante la individualización y asistencialización de las intervenciones sobre el desempleo y la pobreza.
- Just Transition, States and Businesses (4 Jul 2018) | Diego Azzi
One reason why climate change is such a complex and fascinating issue is that it affects everyone everywhere. It simultaneously touches upon a wide range of interests, both private and public. Within the climate negotiations space, Just Transition is a contentious issue for the various actors involved, primarily states and firms, as well as NGOs, social movements and trade unions that do their best to monitor and influence the negotiation outcomes.
- The Hidden Pitfalls of the Just Transition Narrative: A Response (4 Jul 2018) | Anabella Rosemberg
In his recent think piece published in the Just Transition(s) Online Forum, Tadzio Müller questions the "pitfalls" of the Just Transition narrative and argues that it risks wasting precious time in the fight against climate change. As someone who has worked with the labour movement on this concept and its narrative and strategies for more than a decade, I would like to offer some alternative reflections.
- “As Time Goes By…”: The Hidden Pitfalls of the Just Transition Narrative (14 Jun 2018) | Tadzio Müller
Rapid climate action is urgently needed to put the world on track for limiting global warming to 2°C above pre-industrial levels. Leading scientists suggest that we need to bend the emissions curve significantly by 2020 if globally agreed temperature goals are to remain attainable. So is the Just Transition debate just a waste of time? This piece takes a critical look at pitfalls in the ongoing discussions.
- Contesting the Colour of a Just Transition in South Africa (3 May 2018) | Jacklyn Cock
Reliant on heavy industry and coal-fuelled electricity, South Africa is one of the most carbon intense economies in the world. The Government has made commitments to reduce carbon emissions but is simultaneously promoting the expansion of coal. As resistance to coal is growing, a transformative approach to Just Transition has the potential to overcome differences that currently constrain unified action.
- Decisions for Davos (19 Jan 2016) | Paul Ladd
From today, over 2,500 people will descend on Davos for the World Economic Forum. Most will be leaders from business, joined also by representatives from governments, international organizations and civil society. In this blog, read three simple suggestions for how business leaders can commit to the SDGs and not only help to make the world better for people now, but also more resilient to respond to future shocks—whether these are driven by technology or not.
- Two Steps Forward, One Step Back? Taking Stock of Progress on Gender Equality since the Beijing Platform for Action (26 Nov 2015) | Andrea Kaufmann, Valeria Esquivel
The 1995 Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action marked an important moment for gender equality. However, in the decades since then the achievements are under threat or may even be rolled back. The concluding piece in the UNRISD Think Piece Series “Let’s Talk about Women’s Rights: 20 Years after the Beijing Platform for Action” brings together some of the main strands of argument covered by 16 feminist thinkers reflecting on the advancements and challenges in gender equality since 1995. Although there have been some successes—the creation and improvement of legal frameworks for the defence of women’s rights, and progress in efforts to combat violence against women—there are still impediments: rigid gender stereotypes in society and institutions, a lack of funding for activism, and conservative forces coupled with a lack of political will to work for further progress. The need to realize women’s rights is now more urgent than ever.
- Incorporating the Informal Sector in Social Protection Programmes for Universal Realization of the Rights to Social Security (5 May 2014) | Barbara Caracciolo
In the majority of cases, informality is not a choice but rather a necessity for those unable to access formal jobs or any kind of social protection. Yet, current social protection systems have mainly been designed for workers in the formal economy who are less vulnerable than those in the informal economy. This think piece presents international instruments which can help to improve the situation, especially if the participation of informal workers themselves can be meaningfully implemented.
- Public Support for Work Integration Social Enterprises (WISEs) in Spain. Some Lessons for More Productive Support. (31 Dec 2013) | Blanca Miedes Ugarte
Manuela A. Fernández Borrero
Work Integration Social Enterprises (WISEs) aim to integrate people at risk of permanent exclusion from the labour market into work and society through a productive activity. In Spain, despite the fact that national law establishes a common regulatory framework, recognition and support of WISEs is the responsibility of each Autonomous Regional Government. As a consequence, today there are twelve systems of public support for WISEs in the country. This striking diversity allows us to compare the outcomes of the different models and to study their efficiency. The analysis of the most recent data (2011) shows that there is a clear correlation between the amount of aid received by WISEs and the quantity of integration jobs they generate. However, the return on public investment varies greatly from one region to another, even when the regions are socio-economically similar. This points to the importance of specific institutional factors in each territory as well as the type of public aid.
- David and Goliath—Cooperatives and the Global Crisis (17 Jul 2013) | Claudia Sanchez Bajo
We have been through a global crisis for the last six years with dramatic consequences. In the face of the crisis, cooperatives have shown not only potential but have actually demonstrated a higher degree of resilience in terms of jobs and activity. This UNRISD think piece gives details on how cooperative enterprises show resilience during the crisis and how they implement management practices based on solidarity, efficiency and innovation, based on four case studies and grounded research.
- Solidarity Economy Initiatives from the Ground Up: What can we Learn from the Women Home-based Workers of Southeast Asia? (11 Mar 2013) | Rosalinda Pineda Ofreneo
What can the most invisible and marginalized of women workers contribute to the discourse on solidarity economy based on their concrete experiences over time?
This question acquires significance in the light of the combined financial, economic, and environmental crises coupled with the increasing incidence of disasters in Southeast Asia. These have led to massive job losses in many parts of the subregion. In response to these events, home-based workers’ organizations and networks have risen to the challenge by developing solidarity economy initiatives, with varying results, potential and limitations based on specific national and local contexts.
- Green Economy and Sustainable Development: Which Way for the Informal Economy? (23 Jul 2012) | Fredrick Otieno Dawa, Mary Njeri Kinyanjui
This think piece argues that the informal economy should be included in discussions on green economy. The informal economy represents three-fourths of non-agricultural employment in sub-Saharan Africa, making it an important component in the social, economic and political arenas in Africa. The authors draw on a case study on the informal sector in Kenya, known as the Kamukunji Jua Kali cluster, to make their case. The cluster is an initiative by subaltern groups that supports rural agriculture, creates jobs, recycles industrial waste and has an association that runs its own affairs. It is an example of how the informal economy in Kenya is linking social and environmental concerns. The likelihood that this sector will persist requires rethinking the informal economy in terms of community economies that secure livelihoods, cultural identity and employment while moving toward green economies more generally.
- Driving Green Jobs through Rural Renewable Energy Systems (8 May 2012) | Carola Kantz, J.R. Siegel, Kathrin Bimesdörfer
Green growth is being touted as a way to reconcile economic growth and sustainable development. However, as this think piece demonstrates, there is a gap in the assessment of data and knowledge with regard to employment and labour conditions. Using a rural off-grid electrification initiative in Bangladesh as an example, the authors aim to build awareness about employment and job conditions, and suggest indicators of social dimensions.
- Security Sector Reform Needs Inclusive Politics and Jobs for the Poor (19 Mar 2012) | Yusuf Bangura
Security sector reform has gained prominence in recent years as the international community seeks solutions to seemingly intractable conflicts. However, in order to achieve sustainable peace, security sector reform needs to be grounded in inclusive government and growth strategies that deliver jobs to the poor.
- World Development Report 2012: Gender Equality and Development - An Opportunity Both Welcome and Missed (7 Oct 2011) | Shahra Razavi
That the World Bank has devoted its 2012 flagship publication to the topic of gender equality is a welcome opportunity for widening the intellectual space. However, it is also a missed opportunity. By failing to engage seriously with the gender biases of macroeconomic policy agendas that define contemporary globalization, and by reducing social policy to a narrow focus on conditional cash transfers, the report is unable to provide a credible and even-handed analysis of the challenges that confront gender equality in the 21st century and appropriate policy responses for creating more equal societies.