Improving the availability of labour statistics in support of evidence-based policies​

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

The ILO have partnered with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to engender statistical standards on the informal economy. A three-year project involves identifying gender gaps in informality statistics and developing methods to address them. It supports testing of labour force survey questions and methods in at least two countries during 2021 and 2022. The project will ensure gender considerations are integrated in the revised standards for informality statistics and accompanying guidance and tools.

UN Women logo

In 2019, the ILO partnered with UN-Women to create a series of novel labour market indicators, key to gender analysis. The main innovation resulting from this project was the inclusion of a variable on the household type in ILOSTAT, revealing how people’s labour market outcomes change based on their family situation (whether they are single or not, whether they have children, the number and age of children, etc.).

Women’s Work and Employment Partnership

In 2014, the ILO partnered with the Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Bank under the Women’s Work and Employment Partnership, supported by Data2X, with the goal of addressing challenges in measuring work and employment to ensure that women are counted. The partnership supports research in two core areas: subsistence production and unpaid care work.

Project activities focus on providing evidence on good practices and for contributing to global work on time-use statistics under the leadership of the United Nations Statistics Division. 


The ILO and the Mastercard Foundation launched a project to provide comprehensive national-level data on youth in the labour market, including indicators on the transition from school to work. During the one-year project, the Mastercard Foundation is supporting the ILO to create a new, regularly updated database, called YouthSTATS.


In November 2017, the ILO partnered with the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme to advance survey methods for producing statistics on volunteer work. Volunteers contribute their time and skills to help others through organizations such as NGOs, or directly in their communities. Between 2018 and 2021 the ILO and UNV will work with interested national statistical offices to test a module on volunteer work suitable for attachment to national labour force surveys. We will also release updated practical guidance and support countries to include the module in their labour force surveys.

Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data

The Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data is a multi-stakeholder network of more than 150 data champions harnessing the data revolution for sustainable development. Its members represent the full range of data producers and users, including governments, companies, civil society groups, international organizations, academic institutions, foundations, statistics agencies and data communities. The Global Partnership serves as a convener, connector and catalyst, encouraging collaboration among stakeholders to fill critical data gaps and ensure data is accessible and usable.


The ILO is a member of the Statistical Information System Collaboration Community (SIS-CC) which is a group of statistical organisations sharing similar strategic objectives, and mutualising resources and ideas to co-innovate and co-produce state-of-the-art digital solutions to support official statistics.

The main product of the SIS-CC is .Stat Suite, a standard-based, componentised, open source platform for the efficient production and dissemination of high-quality statistical data. The product is based on the General Statistical Business Process Model (GSBPM) and the Statistical Data and Metadata eXchange (SDMX) standards.

Statistics Korea (KOSTAT) logo

ILO and Statistics Korea are engaged in a project for capacity-building and data-sharing on international labour migration. The project covers 25 countries in Asia and the Pacific. The first memorandum of understanding signed in 2015 has been successfully implemented from 2015 to 2019. A second MOU is now in place from 2020 to 2024.

US Census Bureau logo

Between 2015 and 2017, the ILO conducted a 10-country pilot study to develop evidence on how best to update national labour force surveys to produce key headline labour market indicators aligned with the new standards adopted by the International Conference of Labour Statisticians (ICLS) in 2013. The results of the qualitative and quantitative evaluation of the study have been consolidated in a number of guidelines and tools put together under the “LFS Resources” project. Many of these tools related to data collection (CAPI and PAPI methods), field operations management and microdata preparation have been developed in CSPro with the close collaboration of the United States Census Bureau in training supporting our staff.