Human Development Report 2015

Factory workers in Haïti. Photo: UNDP in Haiti.Rapid globalization, technological revolution, demographic transitions and many other factors are creating new opportunities, but also pose risks. Photo: UNDP in Haiti

Work, not just jobs or employment, is crucial for human progress: Of the world’s 7.3 billion people, 3.2 billion are in jobs, and many others engage in unpaid care, creative and voluntary work as well as other activities or prepare themselves as future workers.

The 2015 Human Development Report ‘Work for Human Development’ examines the links, both positive and negative, between work and human development in a rapidly changing world of work. Fast globalization, technological revolution, demographic transitions and many other factors are creating new opportunities, but also posing risks. The report examines how the benefits of this new world of work are not equally distributed, generating winners and losers.

The report argues for a broader notion of work, one that goes beyond the jobs framework, to confront both persistent challenges such as human deprivations, inequalities, unsustainability, and gender imbalances in paid and unpaid work – as well as emerging ones –erosion of jobs, skills gaps, climate change and others. It concludes with a series of policy recommendations on how to enhance human progress through promotion of workers’ rights and broader access to social protection.

The 2015 Human Development Report ‘Work for Human Development’ will be launched on 14 December 2015 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, at 11 am Addis Ababa/ 3 am New York.

 

Our Perspectives

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  • Leveling the playing field: Sports and human development
    Feb 13, 2018

    There is a positive relationship between human development and practicing physical sports. Exercise is associated with improvements in health, cognitive processes, sociability, productivity (due to better physical and mental health) and quality of life in general.

  • Human development means realizing the full potential of every life
    Mar 21, 2017

    Human development is all about human freedoms: freedom to realize the full potential of every human life, not just of a few, nor of most, but of all lives in every corner of the world—now and in the future. Such universalism gives the human development approach its uniqueness. However, the principle of universalism is one thing; translating it into practice is another. Over the past quarter-century there has been impressive progress on many fronts in human development, with people living longer, more people rising out of extreme poverty and fewer people being malnourished. Human development has enriched human lives—but unfortunately not all to the same extent, and even worse, not every life. It is thus not by chance but by choice that world leaders in 2015 committed to a development journey that leaves no one out—a central premise of the 2030 Agenda. Mirroring that universal aspiration, it is timely that the 2016 Human Development Report is devoted to the theme of human development for everyone. The Report begins by using a broad brush to paint a picture of the challenges the world faces and the hopes humanity has for a better future. Some challenges are lingering (deprivations), some are deepening (inequalities) and some are emerging (violent extremism), but most are mutually reinforcing. Whatever their nature or reach, these challenges have an impact on people’s well-being in both present and future generations.

  • Challenges and opportunities for Latin America and the Caribbean in 2017
    Mar 10, 2017

    Latin America and the Caribbean have made notable progress on development in recent decades. By 2015, the region had met most of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), a historical feat, especially with regard to poverty reduction, access to safe drinking water and primary education. From 2002 to 2013, close to 72 million people left poverty and some 94 million rose to the middle class. Even so, inequality continues to be a characteristic of the region. Latin America and the Caribbean are home to 10 of the world’s 15 most unequal countries. According to our Human Development Report for the region, 220 million people (38 percent, almost two in every five Latin Americans) are economically vulnerable today. Officially they are not poor, but neither have they managed to make it to the middle class. Among these, 25 to 30 million are at risk of falling back into poverty.

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