Securing Livelihoods for All

Foresight for Action

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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.



Scenarios for future livelihoods

OECD Development Centre

This chapter explores a range of possible futures for livelihoods. It uses a foresight approach to develop five alternative scenarios for the future which build on some of the trends outlined in Chapter 3. The five scenario storylines look forward to 2030: three are crisis scenarios, while two are more positive; all are possible based on current trends. Scenario 1 describes a world in which rapid automation and ageing populations in the developed world lead to dramatic jobless growth. Scenario 2 imagines the impact of widespread drought in those developing regions already struggling to employ a large share of young people. Scenario 3 envisages the impact on livelihoods of another major global financial crisis. Scenario 4 takes a more optimistic perspective to describe a world in which technology is a positive force for jobs, education and solutions to cope with environmental challenges. Scenario 5 explores a world in which jobless growth encourages people to value social well-being over economic growth and to develop creative ways of making a living. All the scenarios raise a wealth of policy options and possibilities for building inclusiveness and resilience into future livelihoods.


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