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Home » EUC and the UN Sustainable Development Goals » EUC and SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth

EUC and SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth

Promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all.

Economic growth should be a positive force for the planet. SDG 8 promotes sustained, inclusive, and sustainable economic growth coupled with decent and fulfilling employment for all. EUC researchers are investigating the intersections between global labour rights and COVID-19 to initiate positive economic environments for all.

Labour relations in the global fishing industry

The global fishing industry is notorious for its mistreatment of workers. Peter Vandergeest and Philip Kelly, alongside their team of researchers and graduate students, have worked collaboratively to understand labour issues experienced by these fishery workers and the organizations that support them, in addition to the impacts they felt in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. By unpacking social, technological, ecological, and economic processes, this team of researchers is supporting a more sustainable global fishery industry that treats its workers with greater dignity.


Modelling alternative economic and environmental futures

Peter Victor, in his new book, Escape from Overshoot: Economics for a Planet in Peril, talks about the evidence that humanity has overshot the capacity of the planet to support us. He describes how we got here, notes the neglected warnings of some famous economists, and highlights current trends that threaten a bleak future. He explains the inadequacy of green growth and points to other proposals for changing course, such as steady-state economics, doughnut economics, and degrowth.


Ecological Footprint Initiative: Accounting for Sustainability

York University’s Ecological Footprint Initiative (EFI) produces the world-renowned National Ecological Footprint and Biocapacity Accounts.  These accounts measure the capacity of lands and water to provide humanity with food and renewable materials, space for settlements and infrastructure, and the sequestration of carbon emissions.  This capacity can be compared to current consumption, and related to global trade flows, to derive the intuitive metric of an Ecological Footprint.  This comparison and the array of data within the accounts can help humanity to strategize about pathways to “net zero emissions” by 2050 and to achieve several Sustainable Development Goals.  The data can help to tell stories at various geographic scales and over time.


Migrant and refugee workers in Alberta's meatpacking industry face precarious conditions under COVID-19

Jennifer Hyndman and Bronwyn Bragg, alongside the community-based organization ActionDignity, collaborated to examine the intersections between immigration, temporary migration policies, and the health and safety of immigrant and migrant ‘essential’ workers in response to the COVID-10 pandemic’s impact in the meatpacking industry in Southern Alberta. Their research demonstrates the importance of creating safe and decent working conditions for all.


Reorienting labor unions in pandemic

Labour rights, and safe and secure working conditions, are integral markers of decent work. Labour geographer Steven Tufts specializes in understanding the role of unions and collective action in shaping our economic, environmental, and social landscapes. The COVID-19 pandemic brought unprecedented hurdles to workers, which Tufts found could be mitigated by labour unions. His work demonstrates the importance of labour rights and movements in creating safe working spaces during the pandemic and beyond.


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