Latin American Economic Outlook 2015

Education, Skills and Innovation for Development

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The Latin American Economic Outlook is the OECD Development Centre’s annual analysis of economic developments in Latin America. It is produced in partnership with the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) as well as CAF, the development bank of Latin America. Each edition includes a detailed macroeconomic overview as well as analysis of how the global context is shaping economic performance in the region. The Latin American Economic Outlook also takes an in-depth look at a special theme related to development in Latin America, taking into account future strategic challenges and opportunities. The 2015 edition focuses on the role of education, skills and innovation for development, taking stock of the current situation in the region, identifying the main challenges and opportunities in these fields, and presenting a series of policy areas where action is needed to impulse Latin America’s development.

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Innovation for Development in Latin America

OECD Development Centre

Latin America has significantly improved its macroeconomic stability and some aspects of its population’s well-being. However, greater efforts are needed to raise productivity levels, create goodquality jobs and reduce the size of the informal economy. Policies therefore need to be geared towards making the production system more diverse and more sophisticated. This chapter analyses the relationship between skills development and innovation processes in the production system, focusing on the impact of the stock of skills on long-term productivity and growth. Various indicators are used to measure the knowledge intensity of the production structure and to estimate the knowledge-based capital of the economy. The chapter also discusses certain indicators of the contribution made by foreign direct investment to skills development. Finally, looking at certain case studies, it discusses the relationship between skills, innovation and productivity increases at the firm level.

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