Decent Rural Employment

FAO-ILO Partnership

FAO and the International Labour Organization (ILO) have a long history of collaboration that dates back to 1947. The overall goal of the collaboration is to promote sustainable agriculture and rural development, with particular attention to improving rural livelihoods; supporting decent work and employment creation; and promoting gender equality in rural areas.

To act on these common priorities, FAO and the ILO have embarked on an ambitious partnership to extend the standards of the Decent Work Agenda to the agricultural sector and rural areas. While the ILO leads the Global Employment and Decent Work Agenda, FAO has a crucial complementary role to play in promoting decent rural employment, specifically with respect to employment in agriculture, in agro-processing and in rural marketing enterprises and industries.

Since its inception, the FAO-ILO partnership has generated significant results, and has grown in scope and effectiveness. FAO and the ILO also engage in numerous joint initiatives at country level, including the Decent Work for Food Security (DW4FS) programme and the United Nations Joint Programmes (UNJP) on rural youth enterprise development. FAO and ILO’s joint involvement in the International Partnership for Cooperation on Child Labour in Agriculture (IPCCLA) has also delivered significant results at both the national and international levels.

The two United Nations agencies work to:

  • Promote rural and agricultural development strategies that are socially, environmentally and economically sustainable.
  • Achieve internationally agreed development goals, in particular those that are relevant to decent work, employment promotion, gender equality and social protection.
  • Strengthen synergies between ILO and FAO activities at country level in support of national development plans and programmes, including in the context of poverty reduction strategies, development assistance frameworks and common country assessments. 
  • Develop more coherent and comprehensive normative instruments, and provide assistance for their implementation.