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This study aims to contribute to the discussion on policies to address the persistent low female labor force participation in the Philippines by providing labor market intelligence on economically inactive women in the country. It identifies trends in female economic inactivity and describes the profile of females out of the labor force across key sociodemographic characteristics using data from the Labor Force Survey (LFS) from 1988 to 2020. It also provides econometric estimates of the determinants of female labor force participation in the Philippines by utilizing logistic regression analysis and repeated cross-sectional data from the merged LFS and Family Income and Expenditure Survey (FIES) datasets for 2003, 2006, 2008, 2012, and 2015. In view of the persistence of low labor participation of women across their life cycle, and household and family responsibilities as a key driver of this, addressing low female labor force participation would require a comprehensive set of interventions which supports women’s choice and expands their freedom whether to work or not. This is to help women have positive outcomes whether they want to work or not, or whether they have voluntary/involuntary labor market attachment/detachment, so that they will have smoother transitions in and out of the labor force.

Drawing on a panel data comprised of all 16 administrative regions in the Philippines observed over a 14 year-period (i.e., 2006-2019), the study offers empirical evidence on the linkage of Public Employment Services (PESs) and labor market outcomes (LMOs)from a developing country context via the accessibility lens. It does so by quantitatively assessing the effect of access to institutionalized Public Employment Service Offices (PESOs) on regional unemployment and underemployment rates. Based from the results of Panel-corrected Prais–Winsten Generalized Least Squares (GLS) estimation, this research finds that an increased presence of institutionalized PESOs is significantly associated with lower regional unemployment. Results further suggest that access to institutionalized PESOs is particularly indispensable at the municipal level and among regions outside of the country’s National Capital Region (NCR), more commonly known as Metro Manila, in addressing unemployment. Meanwhile, the study finds no statistically significant relationship between institutionalized PESO accessibility and regional underemployment, with or without NCR in the analysis. In line with the study’s empirical results, several recommendations for policy actions and further research are offered.

With COVID-19 pandemic, biking has quickly emerged as an alternative mode of transportation. This paper focused on the use of bicycle as a transportation option. The objective of this survey was to collect opinions from the public (especially the bicycle-riding public) that could contribute to planning (safety and sustainability) and greening efforts. Many individuals have resorted to biking due to limited transportation brought about by pandemic, whether for doing errands, recreation or going to work. Results showed that safety and infrastructure are important factors associated with bicycle commuting.

The study looked into how providers of local public employment facilitation services have attuned themselves to the new normal and ensured that the services and mechanisms they implement remained to be accessible, responsive, and unhampered in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result of the study, it was found out that the implementation of some employment facilitation services and mechanisms were momentarily interrupted due to movement restrictions imposed as a response to prevent the community transmission of the virus, and that implementers had to change their overall strategy in terms of service targets and mode of service delivery to ensure service access. While, in general, services remain to be accessible, there are still some challenges and issues faced by implementers as the pandemic continue to persist, including, among others, lack of employment opportunities, employment recovery, and barriers to fully operate digitally.