Sectoral Studies on Decent Work in Global Supply Chains

Comparative Analysis of Opportunities and Challenges for Social and Economic Upgrading

Many governments and employers’ and workers’ organizations want to know how engagement with global supply chains (GSCs) can help national and local economies and communities grow in a sustainable and inclusive manner, promote jobs and contribute to realizing decent work for all. In June 2016, the three constituents will come together at the International Labour Conference (ILC) to have a general discussion about decent work in GSCs.

As input into the ILC discussion in 2016, the International Labour Office (ILO) conducted, with the support of the Netherlands’ Ministry of Foreign Affairs, studies of economic and social upgrading in global supply chains in four different sectors of the economy: animation/visual effects (VFX), electronics, gold and retail. These four sectors were selected for their diversity to provide insight into general trends across the global economy. A comparison of the four sectors helps to understand the social and the economic implications of supply chains within the context of the changing global economy and to identify potential areas for future work. In addition, it contributes to promoting decent work in GSCs through expanding and disseminating knowledge about strategies to improve working conditions as well as productivity and competitiveness in different sectors of the global economy. The analysis carried out under this project will help inform the 2016 discussion and feed into the preparations and possible follow-up to the ILC discussion.