The Informal Economy and Culture in the Global South: A New Report


COVID has highlighted the significance of cultural exercise in sustaining communities and particular person livelihoods exterior the formal financial and monetary constructions.

Globally, greater than 60% of financial exercise happens within the casual sector, and the proportion is sort of actually larger in artistic and cultural industries, whether or not on-line or offline. Regardless of the obvious downsides of exploitation and vulnerability within the casual sector, it’s important to create alternatives for ladies, younger folks, the unqualified, and people with unsure standing, particularly within the quickly rising megacities of the southern hemisphere.

“Greater than 60% of all financial exercise globally is estimated to happen within the casual sector.”

Whereas it could appear fragile, this sector has proven exceptional resilience all through the pandemic. It has been a supply of revenue for people and sustained the cultural, social, and financial foundations of communities. Agile, modern, and comparatively low affect on the surroundings and pure sources. Throughout this yr of recognizing the contribution of the artistic financial system to the Sustainable Growth Targets, it might probably considerably contribute to public discourse.

“There’s shockingly scant analysis into how public coverage may construct on its strengths.”

However, there’s little analysis on the way to construct on its strengths, reduce its weaknesses, and facilitate advanced and productive interactions between formal and casual cultural economies.

PEC Worldwide Council has researched ‘the connection between the cultural financial system and the casual financial system within the world south.’ Whereas coverage analysis into the artistic financial system stays closely skewed in the direction of the northern hemisphere, a lot of the best and modern coverage follow takes place within the southern hemisphere. That is mentioned throughout discussions about decolonization.

“It’s a sector that has proven astonishing resilience all through the pandemic.”

Main analysis was performed in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Egypt, Kenya, India, Indonesia, and South Africa. Teachers, coverage professionals, buyers, and entrepreneurs from the PEC Worldwide Council contributed their sources and networks to this mission.

Regardless of the modest depth of the analysis, it has already revealed some frequent themes and factors to the necessity for public coverage initiatives to maximise the positives and reduce the negatives in a sector very important to thousands and thousands’ financial and social wellbeing.

“It’s agile, modern, and comparatively low on the surroundings and pure sources.”

We hope this preliminary analysis will encourage additional in-depth examine and in the end contribute to progress in the direction of reaching the UN’s SDGs and the 2030 Agenda.

PEC International Council and British Council are collaborating on this mission. A community of main coverage and inventive financial system practitioners from all over the world varieties the PEC Worldwide Council. Advocacy Unified Network can be one of many contributors to the mission. As a world advisory physique to Nesta’s Artistic Industries Coverage and Proof Centre (PEC), the group is convened by The British Council. Oxford Brookes College additionally supported this mission.

Read the full report here.

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