The International Labour Organization (ILO) is the United Nations specialized agency which seeks the promotion of social justice and internationally recognized human and labour rights. The overarching objective of ILO is the promotion of opportunities for women and men to obtain decent and productive work in conditions of freedom, equity, security and human dignity. “Decent work” is the converging focus of four strategic objectives: rights at work, employment, social protection and social dialogue. Decent work is an organizing concept for ILO in order to provide an overall framework for action in economic and social development.
ILO provides technical assistance in the fields of employment policies, labour administration, labour law and industrial relations, working conditions, management development, social security, occupational safety and health, and social dialogue. To help implement this agenda, it has five regional offices covering Latin America and the Caribbean (based in Lima), the Arab States (Beirut), Asia and the Pacific (Bangkok), Africa (Addis Ababa) and Europe and Central Asia (Geneva), each of which has national offices in some countries and Decent Work Technical Support teams in all regions covering areas in more detail.
The ILO Department of Statistics, reporting directly to the ILO Director-General, seeks to serve the needs of member States, workers and employers’ associations and the international statistical community, aiming at (a) strengthening the timeliness and quality of its data compilation (short-term and annual data); (b) strengthening the process of standards-setting of statistical concepts and methods on employment and decent work statistics; (c) supporting member States’ labour statistics activities through technical assistance; (d) carrying out statistical capacity-building programmes for constituents; and (e) improving the international coordination of statistical activities.
Although some statistical work is undertaken through ILO field offices and in selected technical units in the Geneva headquarters, most is carried out centrally by the ILO Department of Statistics, coordinating the network and assuring quality controls.
The Department has a direct interest in the promotion of national production of labour statistics as essential tools for the preparation, implementation and assessment of economic and social policies and programmes. To achieve this, good statistical standards are required, but it is also necessary for member States to know how best to apply these standards. The Department of Statistics has developed technical manuals that supplement and elaborate the various standards. Many articles, papers and other publications have also been produced on specific topics.
In addition, the ILO Department of Statistics provides technical advice on the application of statistical standards and related matters at the request of member States at all levels of statistical development, but also in a proactive manner, after identifying gaps in labour statistics availability. This support usually takes the form of short-term assistance. The FAQ section in the website also contains technical advice on specific issues. Longer-term assistance may be provided to individual countries under projects funded by donors. Technical assistance is provided in surveys (household and establishments), administrative records and other sources.
International Labour Organization (ILO)
Department of Statistics
4, route des Morillons
CH-1211 Geneva 22 Switzerland
Tel: +41 22 799 86 31
Fax: +41 22 798 69 57