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Towards Better Work

Understanding Labour in Apparel Global Value Chains

Edited by Arianna Rossi, Amy Luinstra, and John Pickles

Since the 1970s, multinational brands have increasingly outsourced their manufacturing activities to lower-cost-production locations in developing countries. This has translated into higher labor force participation rates and new empowerment opportunities for previously marginalized groups, but it has also become increasingly clear that workers are often exploited and work in unsafe conditions to keep production costs competitive. This was made dramatically evident by the 2013 garment factory collapse in Bangladesh.

This volume provides solutionsoriented approaches for promoting improved working conditions and labor rights in the apparel industry. It analyzes how workers, governments, and business can collaborate to confront key opportunities and challenges. It offers new empirical insights into the garment sector in Asia (Cambodia, India, Lao People’s Democratic Republic), Europe (Romania), Africa (Lesotho, Morocco), and the Americas (Haiti, Nicaragua), focusing on wages, worker empowerment, and the institutional situations facilitating or hampering improved working conditions.

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