Securing Livelihoods for All

Foresight for Action

image of Securing Livelihoods for All

The world has made good progress in improving global livelihoods. More than two billion people have emerged from extreme poverty over the last four decades. Other notable improvements include real increases in wages for unskilled workers, better life expectancy, greater gender equality and more widespread literacy. However, a number of daunting challenges threaten to undo this progress, particularly on the demographic and environmental fronts. While outlining the status of livelihoods today, this fascinating report enumerates the main emerging trends which will have a significant impact on livelihoods in the near future. It looks at a whole range of issues: economy, technology, demography, environment, security and governance. This book presents five possible future scenarios for livelihoods, whose positive or negative outcomes depend on how several emerging challenges are dealt with. It concludes with ideas for global, national and local action that hold significant promise for securing resilient livelihoods for all.



Emerging trends and threats to livelihoods

OECD Development Centre

This chapter surveys emerging global trends in the economy, technology, demography, environment, security and governance that could have a significant impact on future livelihoods. Economic trends include the continuing economic weight of emerging and developing economies; plus the prospects of jobless economic growth, rising inequality, and the climbing costs of social protection. Technology offers both threat and opportunity: increasing automation of jobs could destabilise livelihoods, while innovation could bring greater access to education and global markets, and medical breakthroughs. Demographic shifts – such as too many old people in advanced and emerging economies and too many young people in developing countries – will all influence future livelihoods. Climate change and natural resource degradation are already affecting people, as are conflict, crime, terrorism and cybercrime. The chapter concludes with some of the governance weaknesses – such as resistance to change, lack of trust, and poor global and national co-ordination and delegation – which are hindering an adequate response to these emerging trends.


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