Press Release – ILO to hold Decent Work Academy in Johannesburg

By | 2 October 2017

More than 120 policy-makers, representatives of workers, employers and community organizations from 16 different countries gather this week in Johannesburg to discuss the future of work on the African continent.

JOHANNESBURG, 29 September 2017. The International Labour Organization (ILO) will organize the first Decent Work Academy in collaboration with South-African National Economic Development and Labour Council and with the support of the Government of Flanders. The event will be opened by high-level Government, Workers, Employers and Community representatives alongside with ILO acting Regional Director Cynthia Samuel-Olonjuwon and Joni Musabayana, ILO Director of the Decent Work Team and Country Office for South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland as well as with Geraldine Reymenants, the General Representative of the Government of Flanders.

The Decent Work Academy will not only be a forum to debate present and future work challenges on the African continent. The key objective is to share the latest global thinking on range of topics in order to find solutions for some of Africa’s pressing labour market challenges. Not the least of these challenges is to create decent jobs for the millions of young people that enter African labour markets each year.

Some of the key issues on the agenda of the Academy are employment promotion, rights at work, gender equality, labour migration, social protection, sustainable enterprise development and social dialogue. All of these topics will be analyzed against the backdrop of rapidly changing realities in African labour markets, be it due to technological progress, social, economic and/or environmental trends.

Participants in the Academy will get some direct exposure to some of the South African success stories in creating decent jobs. On the fourth day of the Academy, some of the participants will gather at the NEDLAC premises to engage in a tripartite debate, while others will visit the Riversands Incubation Hub, study green jobs in the South African waste sector or analyze productivity and working conditions in the automotive industry.

At the global level, the International Labour Organization has recently launched a “Future of Work initiative” in order to be able to advance its mandate for social justice. A Global Commission on the Future of Work is to undertake an in-depth examination of the future of work that can provide the analytical basis for the delivery of social justice in the 21st century. Some of the initial thinking of the Commission will be shared and analyzed during the Johannesburg Academy.