December 2023

  1. A new social contract: achieving social justice in an era of accelerating change

    11 December 2023

    This 2023 edition of the International Journal of Labour Research (IJLR), aims to stimulate reflection on what a new social contract might entail and more specifically the role of workers’ organizations in engaging in the design and establishment of a new social contract within the multilateral system and at national level. Thus, the focus of this issue is both on what such a new social contract may entail and on what to do in terms of its implementation.

June 2023

  1. ILO Brief: Violations of fundamental principles and rights at work at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant and in Enerhodar city in Ukraine, temporarily occupied by the Russian Federation

    01 June 2023

    Ukrainian trade unions report that fundamental rights of Ukrainian workers in the areas temporarily occupied by the Russian Federation are frequently and repeatedly violated.

March 2023

  1. Trade unions navigating and shaping change

    20 March 2023

    The experimentation and reorganization already taking place in the trade union movement today attest not just to the scale of the challenges involved, but also to the potential for significant change. New approaches are being adopted around the world and across several sectors. This study was designed to explore the emerging practices, approaches, capabilities and methodologies that can help trade unions to revitalize themselves by anticipating, navigating and shaping change.

  2. Digital technologies and trade union revitalization in the Arab States region

    07 March 2023

    As part of the “Trade unions in transformation: Actors for change” programme of the ILO Bureau for Workers’ Activities, several regional studies have been commissioned to review innovative practices and positive experiences related to trade union revitalization. This paper explores the role of digital technologies in this process in the Arab States region, focusing on Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon and Oman. It discusses successful and innovative practices with a view to identifying lessons that are relevant to trade unions in other countries and regions as well.

November 2022

  1. Improving Workers' Data Rights

    28 November 2022

    The brief on Improving Workers’ Data Rights covers how workers’ data is collected and used in the context of changing workplace management practises and oversight instruments. It provides important recommendations for trade unions on opportunities and challenges towards collective action on safeguarding workers’ rights throughout the data lifecycle.

  2. Responsible Tech

    28 November 2022

    The brief on Responsible Tech focuses on the responsible usage of information technologies that trade unions should be considering in their own internal operations. It follows the recommendations made during the first two briefs by providing guidance on how trade unions can ask the right questions in terms of the usage of new technologies by its staff and members, data protection of trade union data, cybersecurity as well as exploring options to utilising responsible software to ensure the privacy and rights of its staff and members.

  3. Sustainable Algorithmic Systems

    28 November 2022

    The brief on Sustainable Algorithmic Systems provides an overview for trade unions how algorithmic systems are utilised in workplaces. It further discusses the degree of changes to management practices due to the increased levels of algorithmic decision making, its impacts on workers and provides pertinent recommendations to workers’ organisations on how to counter potential threats to workers’ wellbeing, working conditions and wages caused by the deployment of unregulated algorithmic systems.

October 2022

  1. ACTRAV Webinar Series on Trade Unions in Transition

    24 October 2022

    ILO's Bureau for Workers' Activities (ACTRAV) has organized a series of webinars for trade union leaders in different (sub)regions of the world to discuss key challenges and opportunities for trade unions in transition. Such virtual seminars were held from June to December 2021.

September 2022

  1. Challenges of trade unionism in the face of new forms of work organization

    26 September 2022

    This article describes the structural characteristics of work in Latin America and the Caribbean, in which a pattern of subordination to the interests of capital accumulation and large transnational companies has historically predominated, generating a high level of informality, self-employment, scarcity of jobs and strong social, ethnic/racial and gender inequalities marked by disparities in labour incomes and exacerbated by the new forms of international division of labour.

  2. Trade union revitalization in the United States of America: A call for a labour movement programme in support of self-organizing workers

    26 September 2022

    From a peak of one third of the workforce in 1955 and still over 20 per cent in 1983, at present only 10.3 per cent of United States workers remain members of trade unions. A significant trend of worker self-organizing and formation of new independent unions has emerged, with little or no involvement of or support from existing unions. To have any significant impact, the labour movement must create a substantial, dedicated, grass roots-focused programme – a labour self-organizing workers’ support (Labor SOWS) programme – that will supplement, but not supplant, the needs of these self-organizing workers. This article argues for organized labour in the United States to play a major supporting role in this unique moment and thereby promote its own revitalization

  3. Voice and representation for ridehailing drivers in sub-Saharan Africa: Pathways for trade union revitalization?

    26 September 2022

    This paper seeks to explore the extent to which new players and nonconventional strategies shape the collective representation and voice of platform workers. Drawing on secondary sources, the paper systematically argues that traditional trade union approaches alone will not suffice in filling the representational gap. The need for a more holistic approach involving trade union responses and other players and strategies is recommended as a policy option.

  4. Trade union responses to organizing workers on digital labour platforms: A six-country study

    26 September 2022

    This paper examines the changing dynamics of the employment relationship in the digital economy and its implications for the continuous adaptation of freedom of association and protection of the workers’ right to organize in the AsiaPacific region. The analysis is informed by interviews with trade unions in six focus countries, selected to represent different legal jurisdictions and demographics. As all of the trade unions interviewed worked mostly with workers on digital labour platforms, and in particular delivery- and travel-related platforms, the paper focuses on how trade unions are overcoming the challenges created in organizing and protecting these workers.

  5. Digital activism as a pathway to trade union revitalization

    26 September 2022

    Technological change is of critical importance for the future of unions. On the one hand, the rapid rise of the platform economy and the decentring of industrial work pose an enormous threat to their very existence. On the other hand, digital tools offer a plethora of opportunities for union engagement with existing members, but also with workers in traditional and emerging sectors with low rates of unionization. This paper examines the experiences of 11 peak union bodies across six countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

  6. New wine in old bottles: organizing and collective bargaining in the platform economy

    26 September 2022

    This article presents a non-exhaustive review of recent forms of organizing and mobilizing platform workers across Europe, with the objective of mapping current variations in trade union strategies towards technological change and analytically distinguishing emerging patterns in representation forms among the platform workforce.

  7. Unity and Revitalization of Trade Unions in Africa

    26 September 2022

    This paper follows the history of organized trade unionism in Africa, from popularity and power in the 1980s to disaffection and splintering into multiple unions at regional, subregional and national level in the 1990s and beyond. It analyses the impact of the considerable rivalry between the two main trade union organizations in terms of financial stability, membership density and representation at the African Union and international bodies.

  8. Trade union revitalization: navigating uncertainty, change and resilience in the world of work

    26 September 2022

    This article assesses six innovative approaches to trade union revitalization through the lens of the unions’ ability to navigate change. It introduces the “triple-A governance” framework, based on the three pillars of anticipation (the ability to understand the dynamics of change that may impact emerging futures), agility (the organization-wide ability to deal with uncertainty and change) and adaptation (the ability to translate anticipation and organizational learning into concrete actions and strategies to create desired change). It further introduces a number of participatory, democratic and non-prescriptive tools that can be used by trade unions to reflect and act upon revitalization: these include horizon scanning, the futures wheel, immunity to change and backcasting.

  9. Trade Union Revitalization: Organizing new forms of work including platform workers (Executive Summary)

    26 September 2022

  10. Trade Union Revitalization: Organizing new forms of work including platform workers

    26 September 2022

    The 2022 edition of the International Journal of Labour Research comes at a critical time, marked both by multidimensional crises affecting many countries around the world and by a surge in the attraction and influence of trade unions in responding to these crises. This year edition highlights the experiences of trade union revitalization worldwide with an emphasis on trade union unity and cooperation and the challenge of organizing new forms of work including platforms workers where young people are over-represented.

  11. Old-age pension models worldwide from an ILO perspective: What workers’ organizations need to know

    14 September 2022

    This policy brief aims to show evidences that workers’ organizations can make a vital contribution to informed discussions on pension reform policies and their implementation at the national level.

  12. Closing gender gaps in social protection: What workers’organizations need to know

    14 September 2022

    This policy brief provides an overview of the root causes of gender-related social protection gaps and the ILO’s strategy for filling them.