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The World Development Report 2019: The Changing Nature of Work

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, July 17, 2018
Abstract in English: 
The World Development Report (WDR) 2019: The Changing Nature of Work studies how the nature of work is changing as a result of advances in technology today. Fears that robots will take away jobs from people have dominated the discussion over the future of work, but the World Development Report 2019 finds that on balance this appears to be unfounded. Work is constantly reshaped by technological progress. Firms adopt new ways of production, markets expand, and societies evolve. Overall, technology brings opportunity, paving the way to create new jobs, increase productivity, and deliver effective public services. Firms can grow rapidly thanks to digital transformation, expanding their boundaries and reshaping traditional production patterns. The rise of the digital platform firm means that technological effects reach more people faster than ever before. Technology is changing the skills that employers seek. Workers need to be better at complex problem-solving, teamwork and adaptability. Digital technology is also changing how people work and the terms on which they work. Even in advanced economies, short-term work, often found through online platforms, is posing similar challenges to those faced by the world’s informal workers. The Report analyzes these changes and considers how governments can best respond. Investing in human capital must be a priority for governments in order for workers to build the skills in demand in the labor market. In addition, governments need to enhance social protection and extend it to all people in society, irrespective of the terms on which they work. To fund these investments in human capital and social protection, the Report offers some suggestions as to how governments can mobilize additional revenues by increasing the tax base.
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151
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The Future of Work in Africa : Harnessing the Potential of Digital Technologies for All

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, August 1, 2019
Abstract in English: 
This companion report to the World Development Report (WDR) 2019: The Changing Nature of Work addresses the key themes of creating productive jobs and addressing the needs of those left behind. It builds on and contextualizes some of WDR 2019’s main messages to key specificities of the sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) region. It focuses on how global trends especially the adoption of digital technologies (DTs) may change the nature of work in SSA by creating new opportunities and challenges. The report is structured around three main issues that will shape the future of work in Africa, namely the human capital needs of a young and rapidly growing largely low-skilled labor force, the prevalence of informal workers and enterprises and the social protection policies to mitigate risks resulting from disruptions to labor markets. The report highlights important unanswered policy questions where new research, supplemented by new data, could yield learnings with high policy payoffs in the SSA context.
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188
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The future of work in America: People and places, today and tomorrow

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, July 15, 2019
Abstract in English: 
The US labor market looks markedly different today than it did two decades ago. It has been reshaped by dramatic events like the Great Recession but also by a quieter ongoing evolution in the mix and location of jobs. In the decade ahead, the next wave of automation technologies may accelerate the pace of change. Millions of jobs could be phased out even as new ones are created. More broadly, the day-to-day nature of work could change for nearly everyone as intelligent machines become fixtures in the American workplace.

Until recently, most research on the potential effects of automation, including our own, has focused on the national-level effects. Our previous work ran multiple scenarios regarding the pace and extent of adoption. In the midpoint case, our modeling shows some jobs being phased out but sufficient numbers being added at the same time to produce net positive job growth for the United States as a whole through 2030.
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28
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World Resources Report: Creating a Sustainable Food Future

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, July 15, 2019
Abstract in English: 
The report offers a five-course menu of solutions to ensure we can feed 10 billion people by 2050 without increasing emissions, fueling deforestation or exacerbating poverty. Intensive research and modeling examining the nexus of the food system, economic development, and the environment show why each of the 22 items on the menu is important and quantifies how far each solution can get us. This site presents text from the Synthesis Report, with download links to full chapters from the complete report.
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564
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How ICT Can Restore Lagging European Productivity Growth

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, October 15, 2018
Abstract in English: 
Notwithstanding the emergence of artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, and the Internet of Things (IOT), European productivity growth has slowed, and continues to lag U.S. growth.1 Since the financial crisis, labor productivity in the 28 EU member states has grown just 0.7 percent annually. At this rate, it will take a century for Europe’s per capita incomes to double. No wonder there is political unrest across the continent. And while Europe decreased the productivity gap with the United States before 1995, since then, the gap has only widened. Reversing that trend is critical if Europe is going to be able to effectively cope with its demographic challenges, particularly a rapidly aging population, and be able to more effectively compete in global markets. To do that it needs more ubiquitous use—as distinct from production—of information and communication technologies (ICTs) by all organizations (for-profit, nonprofit, and government) throughout all of Europe.
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63
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Europe Should Embrace the Data Revolution

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, February 29, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Data-driven innovation is unlocking new opportunities for Europe to grow its economy and address pressing social challenges. While Europe has achieved some early successes in data-driven innovation, including in areas such as education, energy, environmental management, health care, open data, smart cities, and smart manufacturing, it has not yet come close to reaching its full potential. The primary obstacle is that Europe’s policymakers, both in its capital cities and in Brussels, have not yet fully embraced data-driven innovation as a core driver of economic and social progress. To inject new leadership into this debate, Member States should appoint national chief data officers to not only champion data innovation domestically, but also serve on a new, independent advisory panel charged with counseling the European Commission on how to seize opportunities to innovate with data.
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23
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Europe Should Promote Data for Social Good

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, October 3, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Data-driven innovations have the power to address some of the most pressing social challenges in Europe. While many government and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are using data in their attempts to tackle a range of social issues from high unemployment to the refugee crisis, more can be done. To accelerate progress, public and private-sector leaders should take steps to collect data on disadvantaged populations, facilitate cross-sector collaboration on data projects for social good, and implement policies that encourage data use, reuse, and sharing in support of social goals.
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22
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The State of Data Innovation in the EU

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Sunday, October 15, 2017
Abstract in English: 
Data innovation—the innovative use of data to create social and economic benefits—is making a significant mark in Europe.In economic terms, data innovation contributed about €300 billion to Europe’s economy in 2016 (or approximately 2 percent of GDP), and its value will likely more than double by 2020. Across society, data innovation is creating more responsive governments, better health care, and safer cities. But EU nations differ in the degree to which they are harnessing the benefits of data. This report uses a variety of indicators to rank EU member states and discusses why some countries are ahead and what others can do to catch up.
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Number of pages: 
116
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Suppressing Growth: How GMO Opposition Hurts Developing Nations

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, February 15, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Campaigns against genetically modified organisms (GMOs), originating primarily in Europe, have created significant obstacles to the development and adoption of genetically modified crops. While the policies and practices resulting from these campaigns impose considerable costs on the economies of origin, they disproportionately hurt those nations with the greatest need for more productive agriculture—particularly the developing nations of sub-Saharan Africa. The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) estimates that the current restrictive climate for agricultural biotech innovations could cost low- and lowermiddle- income nations up to $1.5 trillion in foregone economic benefits through 2050. In short, anti-GMO activists have erected significant barriers to the development of the poorest nations on earth.
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25
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How Canada, the EU, and the U.S. Can Work Together to Promote ICT Development and Use

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Friday, June 15, 2018
Abstract in English: 
Governments in Europe and North America want to harness information and communications technology (ICT) to boost productivity and innovation, but uncoordinated strategies and incompatible regulations make it difficult for them to benefit fully from the mutual gains that would come from greater transatlantic cooperation in the development and use of ICT. This report analyzes key policies shaping ICT innovation in Canada, the European Union, and the United States, and identifies opportunities for policymakers to ensure policies maximize productivity and innovation.
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59
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