chapter
10 Pages

Introduction

ByAlbert Berry

Today most developing countries face significant and sometimes dramatic challenges to the achievement of satisfactory employment outcomes, as defined by the availability of “decent jobs,” jobs which provide reasonable incomes, are not excessively unstable, and are not characterized by bad working conditions. For some countries, for example those undergoing lengthy periods of economic stagnation, it is no surprise that employment and other labour market outcomes are unsatisfactory. In some others where growth has been reasonably good those outcomes are also unsatisfactory or deemed by many people to be so; in such cases the interpretation is less obvious. And, as will become clear in the chapters to follow, dealing with the case of Paraguay, it is unlikely that policy can make a big difference to the quality of labour market outcomes unless it is both designed and implemented in a sophisticated and coherent way. Since such has seldom been the practice in those countries facing major challenges on this front, significant improvements will be required if there is to be any assurance of satisfactory outcomes.