• Nuno Moreira da Cruz

Integrating SDGS into business strategy-SDG #8 - Decent work and Economic Growth



As described in my blog entry February 3rd, I am referring, on a weekly basis, to each of the SDGs: facts, targets, and how could companies be engaged. This week is about SDG#8 - Decent work and Economic Growth

Roughly half the world’s population still lives on the equivalent of about US$2 a day with global unemployment rates of 5.7% and having a job doesn’t guarantee the ability to escape from poverty in many places.

The big dilemma that needs addressing is that moving these people out of poverty providing them decent work, implies that it will need to be done, yet again, at the expense of the planet...which is no longer there. And he is not there because our main focus has always been (and still is!) GDP growth. This was OK as long as the Planet was there for us. Sorry, he is not there anymore. But these people needs a chance and it is the job of the developed world to solve it. I recommend a great book (“Doughnuts Economics, Kate Raworth) which provides a great attempt to try and think how this dilemma can be solved

Facts:

  • The global unemployment rate in 2017 was 5.6%, down from 6.4% in 2000.

  • Globally, 61% of all workers were engaged in informal employment in 2016. Excluding the agricultural sector, 51% of all workers fell into this employment category.

  • Men earn 12.5% more than women in 40 out of 45 countries with data.

  • The global gender pay gap stands at 23 per cent globally and without decisive action, it will take another 68 years to achieve equal pay. Women’s labour force participation rate is 63 per cent while that of men is 94 per cent.

  • Despite their increasing presence in public life, women continue to do 2.6 times the unpaid care and domestic work that men do.

  • 470 million jobs are needed globally for new entrants to the labor market between 2016 and 2030.

Targets: There are 12 targets. Targets and the indicators to track progress can be found here: https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/economic-growth/

Companies engagement:

A lot can be done but I would suggest that “circular economy” needs to be the key element, where, from design to consumption, every product should be considered as a sub-product of another one. The linear model (Take/Make/Use/Lose) is over. Regenerate, Reuse, Recycle is the only way forward. Companies need to embrace this challenge.