"Employee-centric" strategies could lead to fragile households
Employers will face greater pressure to provide more flexibility in benefits packages and work policies; they are likely to respond by disaggregating benefits or flexibility options and letting employees pick and choose. Employees with less bargaining power or in less skilled industries will face fewer choices.
Sources:RAND, Nov 2010, page 7-9: http://newsletters.clearsignals.org/RAND_Nov2010.pdf#page=7
Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition, Bureau of Labor Statistics, United States Department
of Labor, 12/17/2009. Accessed 11/1/10 at: http://www.bls.gov/oco/oco2003.htm
State of Metropolitan America: On the Front Lines of Demographic Transformation, Brookings
institution Metropolitan Policy Program, 2010.
Unum, “HR Trends and Challenges: The Changing U.S. Demographic, Economic, and Social Landscape of the Workplace”, LIMRA International, 2007. Accessed 11/3/10 at: http://forms.unum.com/StreamPDF.aspx?strURL=/FMS_068162-1.pdf&strAudience=StreamByNumber
“American Time Use Survey – 2009 Results”, Bureau of Labor Statistics, United States Department of Labor, 22 June 2010. Accessed 11/1/10 at: http://www.bls.gov/news.release/atus.nr0.htm
See Robert Reich, The Work of Nations: Preparing Ourselves for 21st Century Capitalism, (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1992)
Curbing Dangers of West African Youth Bulge
Like much of the world, West Africa is facing a youth bulge. "With a current population of over 300 million, West Africa is faced with this dilemma of either benefitting from a huge population of which 60 percent is said to be below the age of 20, or pay the price of failure.
Sources:Center for Democracy and Development, Nov. 2010 pg. 11:
Paul Collier, “Economic Causes of Civil Conflict and Their Implications for Policy,” chapter 12 in Crocker, Hampson, and Aall, Leashing the Dogs of War
Organic Rice Farming in Thailand as a Method to Escape Debt Entrapment
IFTF writes that in the face of an intensifying debt cycle, many rice farmers are moving toward organic agriculture away from the industrial methods of rice production that depend on hybrid seeds, fertilizer, agricultural machinery, and other high production costs. These high production costs often leave razor thin margins for farmers, compelling them to borrow for the next season, creating a debt cycle that squeezes farmers even while rice production in Thailand as a whole improves.
Sources:Strategic Foresight Group, Dec 2010, page 18:
‘The real life of Thai rice farmers who produce to feed the world.’ Thailandreform.net. 23 August, 2010: http://www.thailandreform.net/data/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=77:thereal-