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Despite unprecedented progress over the past century, gender gaps in the labour market persist throughout the world and are especially marked in emerging economies. While the quantity of jobs held by women has increased in many countries, female workers continue to have worse jobs than men.
This chapter analyses how skills are used at work, why skills use matters for workers and economies and its key determinants. It draws on data for the 28 OECD countries participating in the Survey of Adult Skills.
Labour market conditions are improving in OECD countries. In the fourth quarter of 2015, the employment rate was 0.6 percentage points below its pre-crisis rate, representing a deficit of 5.6 million jobs. This deficit is projected to narrow further this year, and close completely in 2017. We’re on the right track! But ─ as always ─ we need to dig a bit deeper to see the full picture.
Labour markets are continuing to recover from the crisis and employment is set to return to pre-crisis levels in 2017, but wage growth remains weak, according to a new OECD report.
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In 2015 the Lithuanian government launched an ambitious Social Model reform agenda aimed at balancing flexibility of the labour market and security provided through the system of social protection.
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Although Lithuania’s growth has been impressive, inequality is high, the risk of poverty is one of the highest of European countries, and life expectancy is comparatively low and strongly dependent on socio-economic background.
Strong and adequate skills are essential to support workers’ productivity and to ensure robust employment outcomes. Developing workers’ skills would also increase their personal satisfaction and wages, contributing in making growth more inclusive. The Netherlands performs well in terms of competences of a large part of the population. Moreover, the country has been successful in adjusting the required level of skills over time.
In many OECD countries, the labour market has yet to recover the lost ground suffered in the aftermath of the financial crisis. In some of them, unemployment has been persistently high, resulting in a very high incidence of long-term unemployment.
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This OECD report was developed in collaboration with the United States, Mexico and Canada, for consideration by the three Leaders in the context of the 2016 North American Leaders Summit.
Today, the OECD publishes "Skills Matter: Further Results from the Survey of Adult Skills", the Second International Report for the Survey of Adults Skills, which covers a further nine countries and sub-national entities – Chile, Greece, Indonesia (Jakarta), Israel, Lithuania, New Zealand, Singapore, Slovenia and Turkey– that collected data in 2014-15.