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Agriculture

OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook 2017-2026

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, July 10, 2017
Abstract in English: 
Over the ten-year Outlook period, agricultural markets are projected to remain weak, with growth in China weakening and biofuel policies having less impact on markets than in the past. Future growth in crop production will be attained mostly by increasing yields, and growth in meat and dairy production from both higher animal stocks and improved yields. Agricultural trade is expected to grow more slowly, but remain less sensitive to weak economic conditions than other sectors. These demand, supply and trade pressures are all evident in Southeast Asia, where this report identifies scope to improve agricultural productivity sustainably. Real prices are expected to remain flat or decline for most commodities.
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142
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Enjeux et perspectives de la consommation collaborative

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Enjeux et perspectives de la consommation collaborative
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Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, July 8, 2015
Abstract in English: 
À partir de 2007, la crise financière et économique mondiale a provoqué dans les pays industrialisés une brusque montée du chômage, une baisse du pouvoir d’achat des ménages ainsi qu’une déstabilisation du système bancaire mondial. Les effets de la crise ont agi comme un catalyseur de tendances de fond observées depuis quelques décennies (mouvements altermondialistes, critiques du système agro-industriel intensif, etc.) et ont intensifié un questionnement citoyen sur les modes de production, de financement et de consommation actuels. Cette remise en question a notamment été illustrée en 2011 par des mouvements comme celui des Indignés en Espagne ou Occupy Wall Street aux États-Unis, promouvant un modèle de société plus responsable. Les pratiques visant à échanger et à partager des biens entre particuliers ainsi qu’à limiter les intermédiaires entre producteur et consommateur ont connu un engouement progressif; donnant naissance à un ensemble d’initiatives rassemblées sous l’appellation de consommation collaborative. Ce mouvement récent et grandissant s’appuie sur des pratiques prénumériques telles que les Systèmes d’Échanges Locaux (SEL), qui ont vu le jour en France au début des années 90. Il s’agit de systèmes d’échanges de produits ou de services entre les adhérents d’un même groupement associatif, selon une unité propre à chaque groupe. On peut également mentionner les Associations pour le Maintien d’une Agriculture Paysanne (Amap), qui permettent aux consommateurs de s’approvisionner directement auprès du producteur, ou encore les recycleries qui collectent, réemploient et valorisent des objets de seconde vie depuis 1984. La popularisation de ce phénomène et son essor à grande échelle ont notamment été permis par la forte démocratisation des nouvelles technologies de l’information et de la communication (NTIC), se traduisant par des taux d’équipement en informatique particulièrement élevés. Les NTIC ont contribué au développement de plateformes internet accessibles au plus grand nombre, permettant de mettre en relation des particuliers ne se connaissant pas au préalable pour réaliser des transactions. Les NTIC et le e-commerce ont également contribué à faire évoluer la relation unissant consommateurs et entreprises en modifiant les manières de s’informer et en démultipliant les possibilités d’interaction et de coopération. Les années 2010 ont vu l’émergence d’un mouvement d’empowerment du consommateur, qui s’implique de plus en plus dans les transactions et se positionne comme un "consommacteur" exerçant une influence sur la marque, les prix et les produits/services (forum deconsommateurs, appels à idées, customisation de produits, comparateurs de prix, etc.). Le rapport de force se modifie notamment dans les pratiques de consommation collaborative, pour lesquelles le consommateur passe du statut unique de "demandeur" à un double statut d’"offreur-demandeur".
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336
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Foresight Africa 2017

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Publication date: 
Tuesday, January 10, 2017
Abstract in English: 
The world is facing a major shift in demographics. In fact, by 2050, Africa will be home to a billion young people. With so many of the world’s youth concentrated in Africa, countries have the advantage of large working-age populations, and could be looking to capitalize on a “demographic dividend.”

But the economic contribution of young people will depend on the skills they possess, placing a premium on education. Unfortunately, many countries in Africa are struggling to educate their current youth, and projections in coming decades predict millions more will be left behind. According to the latest UNESCO Global Education Monitoring Report, based on current trends, sub-Saharan Africa will not achieve universal secondary school completion until after 2080. On top of the issue of schooling completion, millions of young people who do complete school still lack even basic literacy and numeracy skills, and recent estimates from the Education Commission find that more than half the world’s youth in 2030 will not meet even low levels of proficiency.
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112
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The circular economy: reconciling economic growth with the environment

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, November 15, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The circular economy transition embodies the actions and transformations which allow the different economic players (including the final users) to pursue value creation by reducing negative externalities as well as the resources that only exist in limited amounts.
Thus, the concept meets the perspective of a sustainable economic growth and relies both on innovation and on the collaboration of all economic players. This transition calls for a change, from a linear model of society based on “extraction, production, consumption, waste”, to a circular model that turns waste into resources.
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104
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OECD‑FAO Agricultural Outlook 2016‑2025

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, July 18, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The Agricultural Outlook 2016-2025 is a collaborative effort of OECD and FAO. It brings together the commodity, policy and country expertise of both organisations and input from collaborating member countries to provide an assessment of medium-term prospects of national, regional and global agricultural commodity markets. The Outlook provides supply, demand, trade and price estimates of major agricultural commodities for 41 countries and 12 geographical regions. The special theme chapter of this year’s edition focusses on the prospects and challenges of the agricultural sector in Sub-Saharan Africa. Prices for the main crops, livestock and fish products all fell in 2015, signalling that an era of high prices is quite likely over for all sub-sectors. Meat prices fell from record highs in 2014, dairy product prices continued declines that started in 2013 and 2014, while crop prices fell further from their peaks in 2012.The main factors behind lower prices have been several years of robust supply growth, weakening demand growth due to the overall economic slowdown, lower oil prices and further accumulation of already abundant stocks.
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137
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Toward global water security

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, August 23, 2016
Abstract in English: 
This report assesses the conditions under which a global Water Grand Strategy (WGS) might be created and implemented by stakeholders in the United States within the next one to two years. While numerous American organizations are addressing water challenges the world over, no explicit policy or vision coordinates their multiple endeavors. As a result, the United States does not maximize its influence in finding solutions to the world’s most pressing water challenges.
This report evaluates the need for a WGS and explores the possible ends of such a strategy. It summarizes what the United States is already doing in the water space,1 and identifies the current model’s strengths and weaknesses. It outlines a process for forging a “Whole of America” water strategy—a stakeholder-driven process—and addresses key implementation challenges.
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22
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The Future of the WTO after the Nairobi Ministerial Conference

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, March 8, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The WTO’s 10th ministerial conference took place shortly before Christmas 2015, the first to be held in Africa. Verdicts on its outcomes range from “the death of the Doha Round” to WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo’s praise for a “historic” package. A more measured assessment reveals a mixed picture. While a number of important decisions were reached in Nairobi, most of the controversial questions were not even on the agenda. And it is less clear than ever where the talks should go from here. A consistent and ongoing shared interest in the global public good of a strong world trade system should persuade the member-states to find constructive new approaches.
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8
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Achieving Zero Hunger

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, October 1, 2015
Abstract in English: 
This paper provides estimates of investment costs, both public and private, required to eliminate chronic dietary energy deficits, or to achieve zero hunger by 2030. This target is consistent with achieving both the Sustainable Development Goal 2, to eliminate hunger by 2030, and the Sustainable Development Goal 1, to eradicate poverty. The study adopts a reference 'baseline' scenario, reflecting a “business as usual” situation, to estimate the additional investment requirements. In this scenario, around 650 million people will still suffer from hunger in 2030. We then estimate the investment requirements to eliminate hunger by 2030. Hunger is eliminated through a combination of social protection and targeted “pro-poor” rural investments. The first component aims to bring the poor immediately to the US$1.25/day poverty line income in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms through social protection for a “Transfer to cover the Poverty Gap” (PGT). The second component requires additional investment to accelerate pro-poor rural growth of incomes and employment particularly in rural areas, where most of the poor live, than in the business as usual scenario. Targeted pro-poor rural, including rural and agricultural, investments are required to raise the earned incomes of the poor. This would, in turn, reduce the need for social protection to cover the PGT. The analysis is complemented by looking at alternative ways to achieve such pro-poor rural growth.
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39
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The Future of Jobs: Employment, Skills and Workforce Strategy for the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, January 18, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Today, we are at the beginning of a Fourth Industrial Revolution. Developments in genetics, artificial intelligence, robotics, nanotechnology, 3D printing and biotechnology, to name just a few, are all building on and amplifying one another. This will lay the foundation for a revolution more comprehensive and all-encompassing than anything we have ever seen. Smart systems—homes, factories, farms, grids or cities—will help tackle problems ranging from supply chain management to climate change. The rise of the sharing economy will allow people to monetize everything from their empty house to their car.
While the impending change holds great promise, the patterns of consumption, production and employment created by it also pose major challenges requiring proactive adaptation by corporations, governments and individuals. Concurrent to the technological revolution are a set of broader socio-economic, geopolitical and demographic drivers of change, each interacting in multiple directions and intensifying one another. As entire industries adjust, most occupations are undergoing a fundamental transformation. While some jobs are threatened by redundancy and others grow rapidly, existing jobs are also going through a change in the skill sets required to do them. The debate on these transformations is often polarized between those who foresee limitless new opportunities and those that foresee massive dislocation of jobs. In fact, the reality is highly specific to the industry, region and occupation in question as well as the ability of various stakeholders to manage change.
The Future of Jobs Report is a first step in becoming specific about the changes at hand. It taps into the knowledge of those who are best placed to observe the dynamics of workforces—Chief Human Resources and Strategy Officers—by asking them what the current shifts mean, specifically for employment, skills and recruitment across industries and geographies. In particular, we have introduced a new measure—skills stability—to quantify the degree of skills disruption within an occupation, a job family or an entire industry. We have also been able to provide an outlook on the gender dynamics of the changes underway, a key element in understanding how the benefits and burdens of the Fourth Industrial Revolution will be distributed.
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167
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Parched prospects: the emerging water crisis in South Africa

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, September 15, 2014
Abstract in English: 
South Africa is over-exploiting its freshwater resources and water could be a large constraint on the implementation of the National Development Plan. Using the International Futures forecasting system, this paper models and forecasts water demand and supply until 2035, the period covered by the National Water Resource Strategy 2013. The authors’ research finds that the gap between demand and supply increases and that the solutions proposed by the Department of Water Affairs and Sanitation will not close the gap without additional, aggressive measures. The authors propose such measures for each sector of demand and each source of water supply.
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Number of pages: 
16
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