Simel Esim, Chief of the ILO’s Co-operatives Unit and Waltteri Katajamaki, Junior Professional Officer – ILO Cooperatives Unit
The cooperative enterprise model is seeing a renaissance around the world. The turnover of the largest 300 cooperatives in the world over the last 3 years has grown by 11.6 per cent to reach 2.2 trillion USD in 2012. Preliminary data from 76 countries points to more than 250 million people working in co-operatives. The International Co-operative Alliance recently postulated that cooperatives would be the fastest growing form of enterprise by 2020.
This is an ambitious goal, even taking into account the momentum of the cooperative movement in the aftermath of the crisis and following the 2012 UN International Year of Cooperatives. Their continued appeal in follow up to the global ‘great recession’ suggests it might not be off target.
Guy Ryder, Director-General of the International Labour Organization
Could a robot replace your job? Fears about technology’s impact on the labour market are nothing new. Way back before the International Labour Organization (ILO) came into being in 1919, the Luddites were one group of early-19th century English workers who destroyed the labour-saving textile machines which were replacing their jobs.
The anxiety that machines could kill millions of jobs in our globalized workplaces is real – and it comes at a time when the world economy is already facing a major employment crisis. The jobs gap in G20 countries stands at about 54 million and could expand to over 60 million by 2018 unless current growth trends improve.