Impact and people


  1. International Framework Agreements: a global tool for supporting rights at work

    31 January 2007

    France Telecom has become the latest company to sign an international framework agreement with a global union federation. Covering more than 200,000 employees worldwide, the global agreement signed on 21 December 2006 between the French multinational, the Union Network International (UNI), and telecom unions around the globe, addresses respect for ILO core standards across the group - including the right to join a union and to bargain collectively and freedom from discrimination and forced or child labour. ILO Online spoke with Dominique Michel, Team Leader of the ILO's Multinational Enterprises Programme, about these global agreements.

  2. Creating a "socialist harmonious society in the countryside": Towards universal health insurance in rural China

    30 January 2007

    In 2003, the government launched a New Rural Cooperative Medical Insurance (NRCMI) with an ambitious objective of covering all rural residents by 2010. The new health insurance system is seen as a central pillar of the government's plan to improve the working and living conditions of the country's huge agricultural workforce and eliminate poverty in the countryside. Will it be feasible?


  1. International Migrants Day (18 December 2006) Reversing the brain drain in China: the return of the 'sea turtles'

    11 December 2006

    As China's economy continues to grow exponentially, the country faces a shortage of locally educated managers with international experience. But more and more Chinese who previously left the country to study abroad are heading back to the land of opportunities, according to a recent article in the ILO's International Labour Review ( Note 1).

  2. Abandoned but not lost: Towards global protection for abandoned seafarers

    07 December 2006

    The complexities of globalization and its impact on shipping have made helping seafarers abandoned in foreign ports more pressing than ever. A recently created ILO database on reported incidents of abandonment of seafarers ( Note 1) is the first step in this direction. Since January 2004, the database has registered 40 cases of abandonment worldwide.

  3. Protecting labour rights - A crucial ILO body celebrates its 80th anniversary

    01 December 2006

    On 24-25 November 2006 the ILO’s International Labour Standards Department organized a twoday meeting on “Protecting labour rights as human rights: Present and future of international supervision”, focusing on the effectiveness of supervision in the international legal system.

  4. Cooperating out of poverty: Cooperative reform in Tanzania

    01 December 2006

    African cooperatives are recreating themselves through member empowerment and increased commercial viability. British journalist Andrew Bibby reports from the United Republic of Tanzania where cooperatives are adopting a new approach to sustainability.

  5. Working together out of poverty No miracles, just decent work

    01 December 2006

    Every day tens of millions of people around the world seek their own way out of poverty through a simple act: they go to work. For many, however, their efforts are not enough to escape the poverty trap. What people need are jobs - and a fair chance of getting a decent one. On the occasion of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty in October, the ILO urged that steps be taken to deal with the global poverty problem. This issue of World of Work highlights some of the options that people may use to work their way out of poverty.

  6. Microinsurance: The social finance and social protection nexus

    01 December 2006

    By helping low-income households manage risk, microinsurance can assist them to maintain a sense of financial confidence even in the face of significant vulnerability. A new publication, Protecting the poor: A microinsurance compendium, contends that microinsurance has to be one of weapons in the arsenal of governments, donors, development agencies and others in combating poverty and achieving the Millennium Development Goals.

  7. Lighting a torch for empowerment - "We matter," say Filipino domestic workers

    01 December 2006

    Domestic workers in the Philippines are being given a voice by SUMAPI, the only workers' organization in the country for this sector. Ricardo R. Casco of ILODOMWORK reports on its progress.

  8. World AIDS Day 2006 The workforce and HIV/AIDS: Employment is a crucial lifeline

    30 November 2006

    In 2005, more than 3 million labour force participants worldwide were partially or fully unable to work because of illness due to AIDS. A new ILO report on HIV/AIDS and work ( Note 1) shows that both prevention and treatment could bring significant benefits to the global labour force and the economy, more particularly accessible and effective antiretroviral drug therapy (ARVs). ILO Online reports from Kenya.