Educated workers and their ability to deal with COVID-19 and future shocks (News and Research 203)


University educated workers and their ability to deal with Covid-19 and future shocksCOVID-19 has disrupted the lives of workers around the world: layoffs, reduced hours (furloughs), and lower wage rates. The writings of the late Nobel Laureate, Theodore Schultz, offer insight into how workers’ educational attainment may determine their fate. In agricultural communities and post-World War II economies undergoing technological change, Schultz observed that educated workers were better at learning new skills and adapting to different work conditions…

Recession and Growth under the Shadow of a Pandemic: 43rd Issue of Russia Economic ReportPress ReleaseSpecial Focus: Education

2aRussia is ranked 34th in the World Bank’s human capital index, and has become one of the global leaders in education outcomes. However, Russia’s education system still faces some important challenges, which are being exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic…

The light of knowledge at the end of the pandemic (Kommersant) | The World Bank’s report on the Russian economy in 2020 (see Kommersant, July 7) contains a special section evaluating the short-term and long-term effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Russian education system. Renault Seligmann, director and permanent representative of the World Bank in Russia, discusses what reforms this system needs in order for “anti-coronavirus” measures to become an incentive for its development…The op-ed begins: “’Learning is light, ignorance is darkness’ goes the old Russian proverb. Education and learning are fundamental to Russian life. Centuries ago, long before institutional education existed, an informal family system developed, within which parents passed on critical skills and knowledge to their children, from one generation to the next.”

From Bio-sludge to COVID Testing: Transforming Businesses to Address a Pandemic in North Macedonia | BioEngineering, LTD, is a small, engineering firm based in Skopje, North Macedonia, specializing in research and development of new products, systems and innovative technologies in the field of ecology and industrial biotechnology. When the COVID-19 pandemic began impacting people’s health and well-being and threatened to overwhelm the country’s healthcare systems, Ivan Kungulovski, BioEngineering LTD CEO, recognized the potential his business had to help in this time of crisis. Co-funding from the Fond for Innovation and Technological Development, through the World bank Skills Development and Innovation support project, enabled the company to expand their work in the field of molecular biology, which allows it to perform routine microbiological and meta-genomic analysis…

What will automation do to the labor market if education quality doesn’t improve? COVID-19 offers a preview | The effects of coronavirus (COVID-19) on the labor market have been devastating. There have been substantial job losses, and initial labor force surveys find these to be especially high for less educated workers. In developing countries, lockdowns have caused migrations, sometimes significant, from cities back to home provinces and villages where family members are employed in agriculture. Governments have instituted massive wage subsidy programs and income support to mitigate the loss in employment. Job loss among less educated workers, out-migration of low-skilled urban workers back to the informal agricultural sector, and large government subsidy programs were all outcomes predicted by our research under a worst-case scenario. But our topic wasn’t the labor market effects of a pandemic—it was the effects of automation. COVID-19 is forcing us to rethink the workplace and global supply chains. Automation constitutes a large part of this thinking.  It has emerged as a solution to everything from treating patients to protecting health care workers, and from re-shoring of production to strengthen domestic supply chains (rightly or wrongly) to enabling social distancing and remote work.  But the pandemic is also providing a glimpse of how automation will affect the labor market unless individuals are able to attain the skills to engage with technology…

Coronavirus ‘Class of 2020’: Europe’s lost generation?

State of Research of Foresight Studies in Education and Training | George Psacharopoulos | “Education futures: A caveat is in order at the outset. Attempts to predict education futures have long history. Based on the earliest ones whose target year has been reached, their record does not look good.”

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