The Vth World Forum

Anita Amorim,

Head of the Emerging and Special Partnerships Unit 

Roberto Di Meglio

Senior Specialist, COOP Unit, International Labor Organization

Known as the GLOBAL FORUM ON LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, its fifth edition will once again provide a global platform where governments, business and labor lea-ders, international organizations, civil society and academia come together to address critical issues and provide answers on how to advance a people- and planet-centered development agenda. This fifth edition will be in a virtual format to adapt to the con-text imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The current crisis is having an extremely serious impact on our societies in health, economic and social terms. 

As far as the labor market is concerned, according to ILO data, there was an unprece-dented decrease of 114 million jobs worldwide in 2020 compared to 2019. In relative terms, this decline was greater for women (5.0 percent) than for men, and also grea-ter for younger workers (8.7 percent) than for older workers. While an economic reco-very can be expected in the second half of 2021 as a result of the COVID 19 vaccina-tion process, the global economy still faces a high degree of uncertainty and there is a risk that this recovery will be uneven. 

It is quite possible that the current crisis will exacerbate the trend of increasing inequalities between and within countries. It is therefore urgent and necessary to seek elements to inform policy makers on how to counteract this trend that threatens social stability. In particular, we must focus on policies that promote more social protection (75% of the world's population does not have adequate social protection), more rights (high rates of workers in the informal economy between 50% and 80%, depending on the country), more social dialogue and more public-private cooperation, which is more necessary than ever to rebuild trust and pool knowledge, skills and resources. In order to launch a recovery for a better normality, social innovation processes are necessary to stop "business as usual" and to promote policies that integrate the various dimen-sions of development aiming at inclusion and sustainability.

The Forum that will take place between May 26 and June 1, 2021 is an opportunity to exchange visions, experiences and knowledge on the integrated approach to territorial development and its contribution in 2021 to a return to a better normality after the pandemic generated by Covid-19. We believe that by coming together to meet this need, actors in a LED strategy can facilitate access to finance, inputs, technology, support services and markets, and improve the ability of producers to negotiate better prices and incomes for many organizations, which can help create fairer and more decent working conditions. The forum will also be an opportunity to foster South-South and triangular cooperation and encourage networking among participants.

The agenda of the Forum will include the participation of leaders from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America who will address the following topics:

1. The territory as the basis for innovation and economic, social and environmen-tal reactivation;

2. Territorial economic models for addressing inequality in the face of the current pandemic crisis and

3. The future of work and the work of the future from a territorial perspective in the context of the Covid-19 crisis.

Innovation, inequality and work are then the axes around which the sessions, plenary sessions and workshops will be developed, aimed at sharing and valuing experiences and best practices, seeking to contextualize them in the current crisis.

The International Labor Organization (ILO), together with UNDP, SEBRAE, FAMSI, UCLG, ORU-FOGAR, ADEC, the Municipality and the Province of Cordoba (Argentina) are structuring a virtual event that offers a global, national and local vision that will identify crucial elements to take into account in the search for a new paradigm of production and consumption that will open the doors to a return to a better normality for a future with more social justice.


© All rights reserved ORU. Barcelona 2024