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Employment in the context of sustainable development

The thematic module Employment focuses on the creation of jobs and income for poor population groups in developing countries within the context of sustainable development.

photo collage Employment 

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Employment is crucial for the transition from subsistence to industrial society. Employment strategies can be defined as a part of development policies focused on finding favourable combinations of economic resources and human capital for higher productivity. There is a triple challenge:

  • Financial resources are scarce, "modern" market rules are only partly established, physical infrastructure and public services are of low quality, etc.
  • Human resources are largely unprepared for the transition to modern forms of a market economy; in many developing countries, 80 percent or more of the population live in a subsistence economy, mainly agriculture.
  • The transition to gainful employment requires changes in the division of labour between the generations and genders. In such contexts, the adaptation of traditional values, behaviour and social structures to the requirements of better employment and higher productivity are as much a challenge as economic questions of development.

Employment, in this module, is understood as the ability to earn a monetary income and comprises both employment within organisations and self-employment both in the formal and informal economy. Employment refers to gainful occupation only.

Sustainability is understood in its broadest definition, i.e. "development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs." According to this definition, sustainability has an environmental, economic, social and political dimension. Questions of sustainability in the module concentrate on the interrelations between employment and sustainability in all its dimensions.

Social effects and globalisation are both relevant issues for employment: Growth of the formal labour market can have positive or negative effects on poverty, on the informal economy or on social structures and the environment. While opening national markets and forcing the international division of labour, globalisation is at the same time a risk and an opportunity for the development of national labour markets. The module aims at a better understanding of the societal effects of employment and of the impacts of globalisation on the chances of employment in the context of sustainable development.

The three main research topics of the module are:

  • The conditions and dynamics of employment in the context of sustainable development
  • The social, economic and environmental effects of employment
  • Risks and opportunities of globalisation for employment

Schedule

 

Review Panel

  • Professor em Dr. Wolf Linder, University of Berne, Switzerland (Panel President)
  • Professor Dr. Uschi Backes-Gellner, University of Zurich, Switzerland (SNSF Delegate)
  • Dr. San Bilal, European Centre for Development Policy Management, Brussels, Belgium
  • Dr. Amrita Chhachhi, International Institute of Social Studies, Erasmus University, The Hague, The Netherlands
  • Simon Junker, Head of Programme/Regional Advisor, Skills and Employment, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Phnom Penh, Cambodia (SDC Delegate)
  • Professor Dr. Santosh Mehrotra, School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India
  • Dr. Richard Perkins, London School of Economics and Political Science, United Kingdom
  • Professor Dr. Clemente Forero Pineda, Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá, Colombia
  • Dr. Ibrahim Hathie, Initiative Prospective Agricole et Ruale (IPAR), Dakar, Senegal

Research Network

 

The projects in the thematic module Employment started in 2014. They represent transnational research partnerships between 13 countries and Switzerland, involving 17 grantees.

Events

r4d Forum 2016 Employment, Autumn (tbd)

 

 Ongoing projects

 

 

Curbing illicit financial flows from resource-rich developing countries: Improving natural resource governance to finance SDGsCurbing illicit financial flows from resource-rich developing countries: Improving natural resource governance to finance SDGshttp://www.r4d.ch/modules/employment/curbing-illicit-financial-flows
Employment effects of different development policy instrumentsEmployment effects of different development policy instrumentshttp://www.r4d.ch/modules/employment/employment-effects
Feminisation, agricultural transition and rural employment (FATE)Feminisation, agricultural transition and rural employment (FATE)http://www.r4d.ch/modules/employment/feminisation-agricultural-transition-and-employment
Linking Education and Labour Markets: Under what conditions can Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) improve the income of the youth?Linking Education and Labour Markets: Under what conditions can Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) improve the income of the youth?http://www.r4d.ch/modules/employment/education-and-labor-markets
The contribution of vocational skills development to inclusive industrial growth and transformation: An analysis of critical factors in six countriesThe contribution of vocational skills development to inclusive industrial growth and transformation: An analysis of critical factors in six countrieshttp://www.r4d.ch/modules/employment/skills-for-industry
Trade and labor market outcomes in developing countriesTrade and labor market outcomes in developing countrieshttp://www.r4d.ch/modules/employment/trade-and-labor-market-outcomes

Further information on this content

 News

 

 

24 Pre-proposals invited to submit full proposals in the third thematically open call 24 Pre-proposals invited to submit full proposals in the third thematically open call http://www.r4d.ch/News/Pages/171031_selection_preproposals_OC3.aspx10/31/2017 11:00:00 AM
In memory of professor Dr. Hans P. Binswanger-Mkhize, Agroeconomist, 1943-2017In memory of professor Dr. Hans P. Binswanger-Mkhize, Agroeconomist, 1943-2017http://www.r4d.ch/News/Pages/171027_Memorial_HansBinswanger.aspx10/26/2017 10:00:00 PM
Inspiring exchanges during the r4d Forum Open Call Inspiring exchanges during the r4d Forum Open Call http://www.r4d.ch/News/Pages/170919_r4dForumOC.aspx9/27/2017 10:00:00 PM
Videos of ICRD 2017 keynote debates Videos of ICRD 2017 keynote debates http://www.r4d.ch/News/Pages/170912_ICRD_Keynotes.aspx9/12/2017 7:00:00 AM

 Contact

Portrait

Dr. Claudia Rutte Swiss National Science Foundation Wildhainweg 3 CH-3001 Bern +41 31 308 2241 claudia.rutte@snf.ch

​​Call Document