Areas of work of the Social Protection Department

Based on the premise that social security is a human right, and a social and economic necessity, the strategy of the ILO for the extension of social security coverage is based on a two-dimensional approach to build coherent and comprehensive social security systems. The aim is that a minimum level of income security and health care should be provided to everyone (horizontal dimension) and higher levels of protection should be provided progressively in line with up-to-date ILO standards (vertical dimension). The Conclusions concerning the recurrent discussion of social protection (social security) adopted by the International Labour Conference (ILC) at its 100th Session in June endorse this two-dimensional strategy for the extension of social security.

At its 101st Session in June 2012 the International Labour Conference (ILC) adopted a new international social security standard, the Social Protection Floors Recommendation, 2012 (No. 202), which provides guidance to member States to implement this two-dimensional approach through effective national strategies for the extension of social security that aim at building Social Protection Floors within comprehensive social security systems tailored to national circumstances and levels of development.

The aim of the ILO’s Social Protection Department is to contribute to the development of social security in line with the ILO’s two-dimensional strategy. In this regard, its mandate includes five areas of work:
The above areas of work fall cover the five major categories of activities for the ILO in social security that ILO’s Governing Body approved in November 2012: policy development and standards related activities; knowledge development and information sharing; technical advisory services; capacity building; and building and strengthening partnerships.