The Future of Work in Africa: The Roles of Skills, Informality, and Social Protection in Unleashing the Promise of Digital Technologies for All – World Bank

Livelihood – Digital Technology

The Future of Work in Africa: The Roles of Skills, Informality, and Social Protection in Unleashing the Promise of Digital Technologies for All
HIGHLIGHTS
:: A new World Bank report says Sub-Saharan African countries could benefit from well-harnessed technological adoption
::Supportive policies and investments are needed to put lower-skilled and lower-educated workers in a position to benefit from digital technology adoption
:: The report, an in-depth regional perspective, complements the World Bank’s World Development Report 2019: The Changing Nature of Work

WASHINGTON, July 25, 2019 – As developing countries brace for technological advances and other disruptions arising from climate shocks, fragility, economic integration and population transitions that will fundamentally transform the work landscape, a new World Bank report notes that Sub-Saharan African countries may benefit from digital technology adoption in different ways than other regions.

The Future of Work in Africa: Harnessing the Potential of Digital Technologies for All, a regional companion piece to the World Bank’s World Development Report 2019: The Changing Nature of Work, says the region has an opportunity to forge a different path from the rest of the world – if digital technologies are harnessed correctly by governments and businesses by ensuring that critical policies and investments are in place….

To take advantage of these opportunities, the report offers several fundamental public policy recommendations for governments to consider, including:
:: Ensure that digital infrastructure is available and affordable to all—in rural and urban areas, and across all demographics—by developing digital infrastructure regulation that spurs competition, supports universal access, and promotes integration across countries to create bigger markets
:: Provide complementary physical infrastructure such as reliable electricity
Support the inventors and entrepreneurs that are needed to develop tools both for upskilling the stock of low-skilled workers in their current occupations and for the new tasks that the adoption of new technologies will enable
:: Develop interventions to facilitate the productivity upgrading of informal farms and firms and to upgrade the skills of their workers
:: Expand the coverage of social protection and labor systems, especially to workers, to spur greater entrepreneurial and worker risk-taking, and to facilitate worker transitions between jobs