Innovations in Public Employment Programmes: A Policy Focus

This training, with the participation of international and national trainers and experts, builds on the Innovations in Public Employment Programmes course, offered annually by the Centre, focusing on current policy debates arising from innovations in public employment programmes and how these can contribute to other policy priorities. It includes case studies from India, Ethiopia and South Africa, and provides policy insights to inform strategic decision-making and programme design.

Public employment programmes (PEPs) are an area of significant innovation internationally at present. In India, the world’s first statutory employment guarantee involves over 55 million people, and is creating a labour standards floor, in Ethiopia, public employment has been combined with a cash transfer programme, and in South Africa, there are new forms of work in the social and environmental sectors, with new forms of community participation.

There is also new policy interest in PEPs, given the global jobs crisis. Governments around the world are grappling with how to stimulate employment in a context of wider market failure, with new debate over the role and scope of PEPs as a policy instrument -as part of economic stimulus packages, as part of employment policy, social protection, and Active Labour Market Strategies, with scope to contribute to the environmental agenda, to social development priorities, and to building new forms of community participation as well.

The University of Cape Town’s Graduate School of Development Policy and Practice (GSDPP), in collaboration with the International Labour Organisation’s Employment Intensive Investment Programme (EIIP) and its International Training Centre, will be offering a course to explore policy issues arising from these innovations in Public Employment Programmes in early 2013.

This course will be developed and facilitated by international and national trainers and experts.

The course

The course builds on the existing course on Innovations in Public Employment Programmes offered annually by the ITC-ILO and will focus on current policy debates arising from innovations in public employment programmes and how these can contribute to other policy priorities. It will include case studies from India, Ethiopia and South Africa, and provide policy insights to inform strategic decision-making and programme design.
The programme will cover the following topics -using a range of learning methods to do so:·

  • Policy innovation: case studies from India, Ethiopia and South Africa·
  • Public investment and public employment: how to get the most out of limited budgets·
  • Public employment: part of social protection or employment policy –or both?·
  • Labour-based construction of infrastructure: limits, lessons and opportunities·
  • Community-driven models and participatory approaches·
  • PEPs in the social sector: a new instrument for social development·
  • Green jobs and climate change mitigation·
  • Decent work and labour standards in public employment programmes·
  • Impact evaluations and theories of change·
  • Public employment programmes and inclusive growth·
  • A technology marketplace: demonstrations of innovative uses of technology in public employment programmes·
  • Strategies to tackle corruption·
  • Getting the institutions right.

Promoting wider public debate on Innovations in Public Employment

A public event will be held in the evening during the week of the course, to allow wider access to international speakers from India and Ethiopia who willl be contributing to the course. The event will be opened by the Deputy Minister of Public Works, the Hon Jer-emy Cronin, and jointly hosted by the ILO and the UCT GSDPP.

Who should attend?

The course is open to policy makers; planners; senior and middle-level officials from na-tional agencies and programmes in Africa concerned with public employment. Private sector and non-profit organisation managers of relevant employment programmes are also welcome to apply.

Faculty and methodology

The course will draw on capacities and learning approaches of:

The Graduate School of Development Policy and Practice:

The School provides professional and academic training for senior government officials, elected office bearers and those engaged in public policy in South Africa, other African countries and beyond.It also engages in research, consultancy and policy advice on issues related to develop-ment policy and practice in Africa. In doing so, it builds on the academic resources of the different faculties at the University of Cape Town, as well as those of local and interna-tional partners. It seeks to strengthen links between the research community and the policy community.The School promotes the development of strategic leadership in government, including a strong emphasis on accountability in government.

The ILO and its International Training Centre:

The International Labour Organisation (ILO) is a specialised agency of the UN System whose mission is to promote full and productive employment and social justice world-wide. Based in Turin, the International Training Centre of the ILO offers learning and knowledge-sharing opportunities in response to the diversified needs and priorities of ILO constituents, partner institutions and other development stakeholders. The ‘Turin Learning Approach’ recognises that keeping organizations abreast of global changes, seizing new opportunities and meeting rapidly evolving challenges that affect both organizations and individuals requires continuous and tailored learning. The approach has several characteristics which, blended together, differentiate it from other approaches and add value in terms of relevance, quality and impact of services. Its essential methodological features include:·

  • learner-centred training
  • experiential learning
  • diversity and flexible design
  • embedded competencies
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