Against a backdrop of growing inequalities, a new report to the 35 Ministers of OECD countries recommends key policy steps for breaking the vicious circle of increasing inequalities and low growth prospects.
At the Happiness Research Institute, we believe that the ultimate goal of public policies should be to improve quality of life. Similarly, we work with measures that complement the conventional ways of measuring progress in society–in terms of growth and GDP per capita. Obviously, human well-being is more than wealth.
It is hardly surprising that rising inequality has translated into growing political disaffection, anti-market sentiment and disenchantment with globalisation. In such a context, we desperately need to take action to promote inclusive growth and restore public confidence in the power of policymakers to improve people’s lives.
We are faced with a paradox: never before in the course of human history have we enjoyed better standards of living, working and health as we do in this present period of globalisation–and still many people turn against globalisation. Why?
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Recent debates of Basic Income proposals shine a useful spotlight on the challenges that traditional forms of income support are increasingly facing, and highlight gaps in social provisions that largely depend on income or employment status. Reforms towards more universal income support would need to be introduced in stages, requiring a parallel debate on how to finance a more equal sharing of the benefits of economic growth.
Our ability to live longer, healthier and more productive lives is one of our greatest accomplishments. Here in the US, demographers predict that more than half the children born today will live to at least 100. And, according to some, the first person to live to the age of 150 has already been born.
Finland has taken the decision to test a basic income for unemployed job seekers from the beginning of 2017. The trial will run for two years. The main goal behind the experiment is to see if the mechanism of a basic income (unconditional financial support paid regularly to customers) will increase the incentive for recipients to take up and stay in employment.
Over the past ten years economic growth in Asia has contributed to a reduction of poverty as well as fertility rates, and greater prosperity has contributed to gains in life expectancy. However, at present many workers still work in informal employment, frequently for long hours at little pay and without social protection coverage. A growing demand for social support, extending the coverage of social protection benefits and improving the job quality of workers will be among Asia’s major challenges in future. This report considers these challenges, providing policy examples from countries to illustrate good practice, including Bangladesh, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, Singapore and Viet Nam.
People of my generation grew up with a set of intuitive assumptions about human progress: hatred and prejudice would give way to reason, democracy would displace authoritarianism, and the economic good times would roll and roll.
Social enterprises are long-standing agents of inclusive growth and democratisation of the economic and social spheres, and they have proved resilient to economic adversity all the while addressing socio-economic challenges in innovative ways, re-integrating people back to the labour market, and contributing to overall social cohesion. This compendium derives policy lessons for boosting social enterprises from the analysis of 20 initiatives in several EU member-countries, covering a range of policy areas from legal frameworks, finance, market access, and support structures, to education and skills.