ILO launches the new guide on Value Chain Development for Decent Work

January 16, 2021

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ILO launches the new VCD for Decent Work Guide

Find the new guide from January 20, 2021

In the midst of a global pandemic - the effects of which are likely to be felt for years to come - many millions are at risk of losing their livelihoods and unable to access opportunities to work themselves and their families out of, or away from, poverty.

Yet even before, there were significant challenges in the world of work. While the number of workers living in extreme poverty has declined dramatically over the past quarter of a century, only last year the ILO issued a warning that achievements in reducing unemployment around the world were not being matched by improvements in the quality of work.

Value chains are an integral part of today’s modern, globalised economies. They increasingly shape how products are designed, developed and disposed of - and determine who benefits from economic value-creation. The ILO strongly believes that, when well done, value chain development can bring about economic, social and environmental upgrading.

The ILO has been a pioneer of using a systems approach for value chain development, with the aim of supporting the creation of more and better jobs. A systems approach is critical given the scale of global challenges. Too many development interventions remain at the pilot phase and do not lead to widespread change; or are too expensive to deliver and require vast amounts of funding to roll out. By being catalytic – trying to achieve more impact with less resources – a systems approach can boost local ownership and sustainability of outcomes.

This third edition of Value Chain Development for Decent Work updates our flagship publication to reflect the latest thinking and practical examples.

This Guide provides an overview of how to take a systems approach to value chain development with the objective of creating more and better jobs. Although a number of other manuals on value chain development (VCD) already exist, the aim of this Guide is to strengthen the focus on decent work. It is designed to be used by those involved in project development, implementation and evaluation. It can also be a useful resource for policy and decision-makers, as well as any implementing partners.

Ultimately, the aim of this Guide is to provide a set of principles, steps and tools which can be used and adapted by value chain and market systems development projects in their particular context. It includes real-life examples and mini case studies. Each section is underpinned by theoretical concepts, but the focus is on their practical application.

We hope that this Guide will be the start of a collaborative journey - If you are interested in advancing knowledge or improving how your project tackles decent work challenges, we invite you to reach out to us ([email protected] ) to see if we can find a way to work together.