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|Ranked: UAE in Top 25 Best Countries in the World
A diverse population and a new entry visa system to attract professionals has boosted the UAE in a list of the best countries to start a career and study abroad. Data from the US News and World Report survey released this month shows that the UAE ranked 22nd out of 80 countries surveyed for the best countries in 2017. The country took first place in the “movers” category, based on such attributes as “distinctive, different, unique and dynamic” and placed 10th in the list of most powerful countries. The report was produced in partnership with Y&R’s BAV Consulting and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and evaluates 80 countries and more than 21,000 business leaders and citizens. Read about the UAE's ranking.
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#FutureOfEurope: The Next 60 Years Will Be an Uphill StruggleAs Europe’s workforce ages and shrinks, the region is losing ground in significant wealth-creation areas like technological innovation and productivity. With its current trajectory, by mid-century, Europeans will comprise just over four percent of a world population projected by the United Nations to reach about 11 billion people. In fact, Europe’s demographics will be so aged that the ratio of workers to pensioners will have fallen to 2:1, from the current 4:1. Informed policymakers understand that by opening Europe’s doors to newcomers, their labor shortages will be eased. EU countries that import tomorrow’s workers, educate and train them, and integrate them socially and economically, will gain traction in the world’s economy. Find out more about the future of Europe's workforce.
Dwindling Workforce in China Gives Way to Boom in Automation Industry
China has now surpassed Japan as the world’s top buyer of industrial robots. As wages rise in China, its businesses are looking to automate their processes wherever possible. While wages for manufacturing workers continue to rise, the price of industrial robots is becoming more affordable. Technology that was once prohibitively expensive is now considered a feasible resource for factories in China. Chinese president Xi Jinping called for a “robot revolution” in 2014, in a bid to alleviate fears of a dwindling labor market caused in part by China’s fierce one-child policy, which was officially phased out in 2015. Because of the policy, economists expect to see the country’s working-age population plunge from one billion people in 2015 to 800 million by 2050. Read more about China's automation boom.
Australia Tops the Charts for Flexibility at Work
Australia is one of the world’s most flexible countries in which to work, says a Polycom study. Ninety percent of Australian companies currently offer flexible working benefits. The study notes that almost two-thirds (62 percent) of the global working population take advantage of flexible working practices, but this rises to 75 percent for Australians. The ability to work remotely is believed to boost performance, and in fact, 98 percent of all respondents said they believe it has a positive impact on productivity. The study revealed that 79 percent of Australians use video collaboration technology multiple times a week in the workplace to stay connected to team members, and an overwhelming 91 percent of global respondents said video collaboration helped them get to know their coworkers better. Learn more about Australia's flexible work status.
Budget Focus Will be Skills and Innovation, Finance Minister Says
Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau said that Canada’s aging workforce and the rapid pace of technological change are two factors driving Ottawa’s decision to make skills and innovation the focus of its budget. Morneau suggested that Ottawa will help workers evolve their skills over their careers. “I will also be taking steps to create a culture of lifelong learning, helping people develop the skills they need at every stage of their life to succeed in the new economy,” the finance minister said. Find more information about Canada’s budget focus.
Spanning the Economic Gap Between Asia and Latin America
While the geographic distance between Asia and Latin American countries may seem vast, the abundance of natural resources, labor, capital and complementary competencies can bridge this gap and lead to mutually beneficial economic growth. Latin America, with over 625 million people, will demand Asia’s competitively priced products and services. Asian businesses that have evolved and upgraded their competitiveness and capabilities can supply the technology, know-how, and the capital needed to expand into Latin markets and reach new customers. Read about Asia and Latin America.
Government Affairs Community Update
Worldwide ERC®’s latest update includes activity in the new administration's agenda such as Tax Reform, Regulatory/Compliance Issues, Real Estate, Trade Agreements and Immigration… and more. Navigate to the current Government Affairs Community Update.
The Downside of the Gig Economy
The macroeconomic climate poses a challenge to trucking companies who want drivers to be independent contractors. The changing structure of the workplace has opened opportunities for people who wish to control their schedules, be their own bosses, and not be tied down. But as informal, independent, and self-employed work continues to grow, we should recognize its appeal while acknowledging its downsides. If a company is striving to fill a large number of open positions, it may be more constructive to have as a baseline assumption that the median job candidate would prefer to have job security, tenure, insurance, healthcare, a pension, and some reward for loyalty: in fact, many of the people who seem to be happy with “gig work” actually may want a traditional job. Read on about the gig economy downside.
Governments Doing Too Little on Gender Diversity, Report Finds
Very few global public sector organizations have implemented specific programs to drive women into leadership roles, despite widespread agreement that greater diversity in senior jobs strengthens policymaking, service delivery and recruitment. Auditing and consultancy giant EY, partnering with the Global Government Forum, interviewed 80 public sector leaders from 17 countries across all five continents. While 96 percent of respondents believe that diversity of thought and experience is key to navigating changes in the public sector, 60 percent of them said that their own leadership teams are not diverse enough. Less than half (49 percent) said their organization is effective at identifying future female leaders, and just 14 percent said it has formal leadership programs in place for women. Drawing on the Senior Civil Service Women Leaders Index – another Global Government Forum research product – EY points out that women hold at least a third of all public sector leadership positions in only six countries: Canada (46 percent), Australia (40 percent), South Africa (40 percent), the UK (39 percent), Brazil (35 percent) and the US (34 percent). “I don’t think anybody can be satisfied until they hit 50 percent,” said Una O’Brien, a former permanent secretary of the UK Department of Health quoted in the report. “We’ve had over 40 years of equal opportunities legislation and policy, and it continues to be a great frustration that we can’t get closer to 50 percent. We mustn’t feel complacent… We should keep asking why we have that gap.” Learn more about the EY survey.