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  • EMPLOYMENT PAPER

    2001/19

    Economic growth,social policy and decent work

    Nomaan MajidMacroeconomic and Development Policy group

    Employment Strategy Department

    Employment SectorInternational Labour Office Geneva

  • ISBN 92-2-112579-3

  • EMPLOYMENT PAPER

    2001/19

    Economic growth,

    social policy and decentwork

    Nomaan Majid

    Employment Sector

  • Employment Sector

    This ILO Sector has the responsibility for assisting and advising ILO constituents inanalysing national and global employment and labour market developments in order toelaborate and negotiate policies and programmes for employment promotion and humanresources development. The Employment Sector encourages them to invest more intraining and human resources development for enhanced employability; to implementspecial employment promotion programmes in situations of high unemployment,particularly in the context of different types of crisis; to promote the creation of qualityjobs in enterprises; upgrade the informal sector and promote gender promotion inemployment.

  • Employment papers

    Cahiers de l'emploiEstudios sobre empleo

    2000/1The impact of European integration on the development of national labour markets

    Philip Raines, 2000

    2000/2Ageing of the labour force in OECD countries. Economic and social consequences

    Peter Auer; Maringels Fortuny, 2000

    2000/3Trade liberalization and manufacturing employment

    Ajit K. Ghose, 2000

    2000/4Poverty and structural adjustment. Some remarks on tradeoffs between equity and growth

    Rolph van der Hoeven, 2000

    2000/5Productivity and unit labour cost comparisons: A database

    Bart van Ark; Erik Monnikhof, 2000

    2000/6Methods for producing world and regional estimates for selected key indicators of the labour market

    Wes Schaible, 2000

    2000/7Achieving full employment in the transition economies

    Geoffrey Renshaw, 2000

    2000/8Assessing aid and global governance

    Rolph van der Hoeven, 2001

    2000/9The ILO and the informal sector: An institutional history

    Paul Bangasser,2000

    2001/10 Redistribution matters: Growth for poverty reduction

    Hulya Dagdeviren, Rolph van der Hoeven, John Weeks, 2001

    2001/11 Self-regulation in the workplace: Codes of conduct, social labelling and socially responsible investment

    Michael Urminsky (ed.), cancelled

    2001/12 Global economic inequality and international trade

    Ajit K. Ghose, 2001

    2001/13 Is minimum wage an effective tool to promote decent work and reduce poverty ? The experience of selected developing

    countries

    Catherine Saget, 2001

    2001/14 Peter Auer, forthcoming

    2001/15 Assessing labour market dynamics: European evidence

  • Thomas Kruppe, 2001

    2001/16 The size of the working poor population in developing countries

    Nomaan Majid, 2001

    2001/17 Galtier et Gaudi, forthcoming.

    2001/18 Flexibility and commitment in the United States labour market,

    Paul Osterman, 2001

    2001/19 Economic growth, social policy and decent work

    Nomaan Majid, 2001

  • Contents

    1. Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

    2. The development objective of decent work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

    2.1 The universality of the objective . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

    2.2. Country specific conditions, institutional base and relativity of goals in decent work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2

    2.3. Revisiting the strategic objectives of decent work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3

    3. Decent work, freedom and human development . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

    4. Economic performance and the development objective of decent work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7

    4.1. The development policy implications of the new and old economics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7

    4.2. The immediate challenge for policy makers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

    5. How feasible are policy interventions for promoting decent work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

    5.1. The dimension of employment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

    Formal employment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13

    Informal employment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14

    The working poor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16

    The employment challenge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18

    5.2. The dimension of security . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19

    Protection at work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19

    Social expenditure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20

    Illiteracy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21

    Life expectancy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

    The security experience of developing economies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23

    The security challenge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24

    5.3. The dimension of rights at work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24

    Gender equality . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25

    Child labour . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

    5.4. The dimension of representation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30

    Freedom of association . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30

    Civil and political rights . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33

    The civil and political rights experience of developing economies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

    Institutions and information . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36

    6. How are decent work dimensions related to each other at different levels of national income? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38

    7. Is there a case for expecting simultaneous achievement in decent work dimensions? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42

    7.1. Country and indicator selection . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42

    7.2. A qualitative analysis of partitioned residuals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43

    7.3 Country performance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43

    7.4. A probability test for pure simultaneity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46

    7.5. The reasons for the existence of simultaneity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47

    8. Conclusions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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