Developmental activities

While not explicit when developing international guidelines on labour statistics, gender mainstreaming has always been an integral concern. The ILO resolutions on labour statistics, adopted by the International Conference of Labour Statisticians, have always been concerned with clearly describing and measuring atypical or borderline work situations, and for advancing measurement methodologies that pay significant attention to situations that affect mostly women. This is particularly the case of

  • the current international definitions of employment and unemployment, adopted by the Thirteenth International Conference of Labour Statisticians in 1982, which clearly identify persons at the margin of employment and unemployment, most of whom are women, children and elderly persons (it further considers the case of women explicitly);
  • the International Standard Classification of Occupations, ISCO-88, adopted by the Fourteenth International Conference of Labour Statisticians in 1987, which aimed to better reflect the occupational structure of the complete working population, resulting in the refinement of many occupations held mainly by women;
  • the International Standard Classification of Status in Employment adopted by the Fifteenth International Conference of Labour Statisticians in 1993 equally improved the possibility to reflect the work situation of women. One example concerns women who, together with their husbands, hold a family enterprise. They were previously considered as 'unpaid family workers' and are now classified, together with their spouses, as “own account workers”;
  • the international definition of employment in the informal sector adopted by the Fifteenth International Conference of Labour Statisticians in 1997 has been instrumental to increasing the number of countries which now produce statistics in this area, where women tend to be very active;
  • the international definition of underemployment adopted by the Sixteenth International Conference of Labour Statisticians in 1998 for the first time recommended classifying workers by presence of young children in the household;
  • the international definition of household income adopted by the Seventeenth International Conference of Labour Statisticians in 2003 recognised the need to include income from the production of household services for own consumption (which include the estimated value of unpaid domestic services)

In addition, a have been written on the subject.