labour rights

The Global Politics of Pro-Worker Reforms

Duncan Green - March 1, 2018

Guest post from Alice Evans, Lecturer in the Social Science of Development at King’s College, London Politically smart, locally-led collaborations are all the rage in international development. Through iterative adaptation and experimentation, states can improve their capabilities and learn what works for them. So sings the choir. But we also need to recognise that governing elites will experiment in ways that further their priorities, as …

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Can a new Index measure whether governments are serious about reducing inequality?

Duncan Green - July 18, 2017

Oxfam’s inequality ubergeek, Deborah Hardoon, needs your help with an ambitious new index As a researcher working on inequality, there are plenty of data and statistics for me to analyse, model and generate ‘killer stats’ from. Of course, there are many data gaps, plus lots of debate on which measures are the best to use (hint, not the one proposed for SDG10). But for the …

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How can global companies (positively) influence development? Engaging with Unilever

Duncan Green - August 9, 2016

Oxfam works with lots of big private companies, but in the (frequent) discussions about the role of private sector in development, our relationship with one (very big) name keeps cropping up. Unilever. We’ve done a ‘poverty footprint’ study of Unilever’s impact in Indonesia, and more recently have engaged with it on its labour practices in Vietnam. Unilever is also one of the targets in our …

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Reading the tea leaves: What the women’s movement can learn from a victory in India

Duncan Green - November 19, 2015

This piece by Devaki Jain, an Indian feminist economist, originally appeared on the website The good news for the women’s movement in India came from Munnar, a hill station in Kerala, last month where a group of women workers won a signal battle against their employers, a tea estate by the name of Kanan Devan Hills Plantations. One of the slogans at the protest read: “We pick …

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The Living Wage: a remarkable story of global progress – how big could it get?

Duncan Green - December 12, 2014

A few years ago, I was struck by the fervour with which a student activist acquaintance of mine, Stefan Baskerville, talked about the Living Wage. Every holiday he would leave his life of student activism (and occasional study) in Oxford and head for the East End of London, where he worked for Citizens UK, a community organization, in a campaign to get the LW for …

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Supporting labour rights in Indonesia’s sportswear factories (Nike, Adidas etc). Draft case study for your comments

Duncan Green - May 20, 2014

I’d like to continue picking your brains on the drafts of a series of case studies I’ve been working on. Next up is some long term advocacy on labour rights in Indonesia. Here’s the full draft case study for your comment (PC case study Indonesia Labour Rights Project May 2014). From 1997-2013 Oxfam Australia’s Indonesian labour rights project (ILRP) worked to help achieve “sustainable livelihoods …

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The living wage campaign: are we reaching a tipping point in global supply chains?

admin - December 10, 2013

It’s private sector week here on FP2P. First up, NGOs have been pushing the living wage in their engagement with international companies for at least 15 years, but Rachel Wilshaw, Oxfam’s Ethical Trade Manager reckons we might be on the verge of some kind of victory. The issue of a living wage is going up the corporate responsibility agenda. Last month, I blogged during Living …

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New international rules on domestic workers – will they make a difference?

admin - June 28, 2011

It’s probably just because I’m getting more right wing in my old age, but The Economist seems to be getting better. This week’s issue covers a new ILO Convention on domestic workers. A quick skim of Google News suggests it was the only magazine from the mainstream UK media to do so. “Without them many an economy would grind to a halt: the global army …

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The impact of the global crisis on women workers – new report

admin - March 30, 2009

A powerful new Oxfam report is released today, ahead of this week’s crisis summit in London. Written by my colleague Bethan Emmett, it pulls together preliminary research in 10 countries across Asia and Latin America to show that women working in export manufacturing industries, e.g. garments and electronics, are often first to be laid off, frequently without pay or compensation. In Asia, there are reports of …

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