Digital technologies are reshaping labour and employment landscapes across the globe. In Africa, large and expanding youth populations, increasing connectivity and proliferating mobile technology-based innovations bring clear opportunities for its labour markets.
African economies tend to feature smaller manufacturing bases, potentially reducing the scope for job displacement from automation in the near-term, but digital skills shortages and high levels of economic informality present significant challenges.
Developing the physical and policy infrastructure to mitigate the risks stemming from technological disruptions, bridge digital divides and build resilient and inclusive labour markets requires careful strategizing, including on regulatory frameworks and social protection mechanisms adapted to the varying contexts of African labour markets.
At this event, speakers will discuss the World Bank’s recently published book The Future of Work in Africa edited by Jieun Choi, Mark A. Dutz, and Zainab Usman. They will examine the impact of digital technologies on Africa’s labour markets and potential future growth pathways. They will also discuss the policies and protection mechanisms needed to promote skills development, innovation and entrepreneurship, in support of quality job creation and digital inclusion.
Zainab Usman, Public Sector Specialist, Africa Region, World Bank
Cynthia Samuel-Olonjuwon, Assistant Director General and Regional Director for Africa, International Labour Organization (ILO)
Chair: Elizabeth Donnelly, Deputy Director, Chatham House Africa Programme