OSUN's Pavlina Tcherneva Helps Chart a Path for Job Guarantee Program in Colombia
“The job guarantee is an economic policy that provides public employment opportunities on demand to anyone seeking decent, living-wage work,” Tcherneva says. “It is a structural stabilization policy that alleviates the economic, social, and political costs of unemployment and precarious employment. It is equity-driven and draws on a long tradition of human rights and social justice.”
Governments all over the world have implemented policies that provide some level of job guarantee, though none have a truly universal job guarantee program. One example in US history is the Works Progress Administration. Part of President Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, the agency employed millions of Americans on a wide range of public works projects during the Great Depression.
During Tcherneva’s meetings in Bogotá, Colombian officials proposed to draft pilot public employment projects to further the work of each ministry. SAE, for example, discussed various ways in which the assets of the agency could support the creation of local employment and strengthen the work of grassroots and community organizations. These pilots would also support the public employment component of the national development plan, which President Gustavo Petro will present before the Colombian Congress in May.
“I was inspired by SAE's employment-centered, social inclusion approach to the management of seized assets,” Tcherneva notes. “In much of my policy work, I am asked to explain the innovative aspects of the job guarantee proposal. In Colombia, I had to do very little of that. Instead, I met with policy makers who were not only receptive but were already thinking about how to make it happen.”
During her stay in Colombia, Tcherneva also delivered one of the two opening keynotes at the Third Annual Conference on Heterodox Economics at the National University of Colombia. Her talk was titled “The Role of Women in Heterodox Economics.”
The job guarantee also featured prominently in the 2021 Global Forum on Democratizing Work, EDI's OSUN-supported worldwide virtual conference, which focused on connecting the right to employment with economic policy. Over 3,000 scholars, activists, union representatives, and leaders from progressive private and public sector organizations, representing 85 countries, participated in the forum, which featured leading economists, such as Jayati Ghosh, Thomas Piketty, Dani Rodrick, and Jean Dréze.
Tcherneva, is a macroeconomist specializing in modern money theory and public policy, with a focus on fiscal and monetary policy coordination, full employment policies, and their impact on macroeconomic stability, unemployment, income distribution, and gender. Her book The Case for a Job Guarantee (Polity, 2020) was named one of the Financial Times best economics books of 2020 and has been published in eight languages.
Post Date: 12-13-2022