“The global expansion of higher education allows work traditionally reserved for the West to be done more cheaply and just as well in emerging nations, write Phillip Brown and Hugh Lauder. The result is that the wages and working conditions of western employees no longer set the global benchmark.” (Source: Eurozine)
Brilliant must-read article in Eurozine on the global war for labour which will put even more pressure on Western wages, working conditions and employment.
“The policy of ‘growing more opportunities’ is not going to work, so we need an alternative that depends on policies that reduce inequalities in opportunity and labour market outcomes. Education and the labour market ‘cannot compensate for society’ because they can’t mitigate the consequences of endemic inequalities in the competition for a livelihood, including access to elite schools, colleges and university, along with inherent inequalities in the hiring practices of major employers; they cannot compensate for gross inequalities in taxation, and the declining wage share that has been going to labour rather than capital – despite improvements in productivity – since well before the financial crisis; they cannot compensate for significant inequalities in the returns to human capital that can’t be explained by different levels of investment in education; and they cannot compensate for the social limits to growth that make it well-nigh impossible to increase social mobility without increasing middle class downward mobility.”
“The report argues that the impact of a transition towards a greener economy on labour markets will extend far beyond the creation of new green jobs, such as those related to renewable energy. This transition will create new opportunities for workers, but also new risks. The challenge for labour market and skill policies is to maximise the benefits for workers and help assure a fair sharing of adjustment costs, while also supporting broader green growth policies (e.g. by minimising skill bottlenecks).” (Source: OECD)
This good OECD report presented on 4 June also looks at the need to re-allocate workers from declining brown industries to growing green ones and demands serious reforms of the tax and benefit systems for workers.
Last week the ILO and UNEP presented a similar report called “Working towards sustainable development. Opportunities for decent work and social inclusion in a green economy”. That report sees a potential of between 15m and 60m additional jobs if the world would shift rapidly to a low-carbon future.
“The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) has called on G20 Finance ministers to drive investment of at least 2% of GDP in the green economy in the wake of independent economic analysis forecasting the potential for green jobs growth.” (Source: ITUC)
From the report:
“There is no choice but to transition to a greener economy, where social needs and environmental protection are at the heart of decision making. Economic research by the Millennium Institute forecast that investments of 2% of GDP in the green economy over each of the next 5 years in 12 countries could create up to 48 million new jobs.”
Greening the EU’s long-term budget can create more jobs than following the traditional spending paths according to a new report published by an alliance of environmental NGOs.
Very interesting jobs cost/benefit analysis of the European Union’s next multi-annual financial framework.
"We firmly believe that employment and social inclusion must be at the heart of our actions and policies to restore growth and confidence. We therefore decide to set up a G20 task force which will work as a priority on youth employment."
Billions for the banks, debts for governments, and a task force to tackle unemployment. Where is Charles Dickens when we need him?
The Best of the Rest:
- Der Spiegel: Obama blockiert Sondersteuer für Finanzkonzerne (Obama kills the transaction tax – O, yes he can)
- Guardian: G20 summit: slumping to the occasion