Wages are a major component of decent work, yet there is a serious knowledge gap in this increasingly important area. This volume, the first in a new series focusing on wage developments, reviews major trends in the level and distribution of wages around the world since 1995. It considers the effects of economic growth and globalization on wage trends, looking closely at the role of minimum wages and collective bargaining. It also suggests ways to improve wage levels and to enable more equal distribution.
Part One summarizes the main trends in average wages and distribution of wages, providing a statistical analysis of the links between wages and productivity, along with wage forecasts for 2008 and 2009. Part Two examines the relationship between minimum wage policies and collective bargaining, highlighting the effects of institutions on wage outcomes and the importance of coherent policy articulation. Part Three concludes with concrete policy recommendations and identifies key issues for further research. The book includes full technical and statistical annexes.