Globalization and Labour Market Outcomes

A two-day event featuring an academic workshop to discuss recent research on the topic as well as a policy forum to present results to the public and discuss their policy implications. Keynote speakers: David Autor (MIT), Elhanan Helpman (Harvard), and Margaret McMillan (Tufts U and IFPRI). Academic Organizers: Sascha O. Becker (U Warwick) and Marc Muendler (UC San Diego).

Academic Workshop (June 23 and 24 a.m.) and Policy Forum (June 24 p.m.)

Conference Video: Globalization and Labour Market Outcomes

Despite the recovery of growth and international trade, employment figures continue to be disappointing in many countries around the world. Even before the crisis, public opinion polls in both industrialized and developing countries showed an increasingly negative view on the impact of globalization on the labour market. As a result, policy makers at both the national and international level are increasingly looking for new strategies to promote more and better employment in a globalizing world and to regain public support for further trade and investment liberalization. At the same time, novel theoretical and empirical research is starting to challenge conventional wisdom about the relationship between globalization and labour markets and generating new insights of high relevance for policy design.

The purpose of this event was to bring the latest developments in academic research on the topic of globalization and labour markets into the world of policymaking. The first one-and-a-half days (June 23 and June 24 a.m.) took the form of an academic workshop that brought together leading economic researchers from the theoretical and empirical sides of the discipline to take stock and consolidate the frontiers of research. The workshop discussed, inter alia, new evidence on the impact of trade on distribution of real incomes, the effects of off-shoring on welfare and wages, and adjustment to trade at the occupational and industry level. Conference participants were selected based on a “call for papers” by Sascha O. Becker (U. of Warwick) and Marc-Andreas Muendler (UC. San Diego). Keynote speakers at the academic workshop were Elhanan Helpman (Harvard) and David Autor (MIT).

Photo 1. Participants of the Academic Workshop (June 23)

The last half day of the event (June 24 p.m.) took the form of a policy forum open to the public. The policy forum presented the findings of the academic workshop and discussed their policy implications in a high level panel debate. It also featured presentations of recent or ongoing policy relevant research in this area by ILO, World Bank, WTO, OECD, and EFIGE, and a keynote address by Margaret McMillan (IFPRI and Tufts U.).

Photo 2. Policy Forum (June 24)

This event was co-sponsored and co-organized by the International Labour Office, the World Bank, CESifo and EFIGE.