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QUEZON CITY The Institute for Labor Studies (ILS) successfully hosted the 12th DOLE Research Conference held from November 28 to 29 at Luxent Hotel, Quezon City, with in-person and online attendees. 

As a culminating policy advocacy activity of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Inter-Agency Committee on Research and Statistical Matters (IAC-RSM) led by ILS, this year’s research conference with a theme “Gearing up for Inclusive, Innovative, and Sustainable Future of Work” underscores innovation and transformative trends in the labor sector brought about by the Fourth Industrial Revolution. 

For the first time, the Institute also featured research studies and presentations from local and international institutions, including the International Labour Organization (ILO), the Federation of Free Workers (FFW), and the Asian Institute of Management. 

The research presentations were grouped into three (3) thematic sessions, anchored to the three key strategic areas of the Labor and Employment Plan 2023-2028: (1) maximizing productive, remunerative, freely chosen, quality, and sustainable job opportunities; (2) ensuring respect for all rights at work, international commitments, and human rights; and, lastly, (3) building an inclusive social protection for all. 

For Session 1 on Digitalization and Employment Generation (Innovation), the following research outputs were presented: (1) Facilitating Employment Opportunities in the Digital Space: A Study on the Activities and Services of Digital Labor Market Intermediaries in the Philippines by Chelsea Nicole Pineda and Loren Art S. Cayabyab of ILS; (2) Generative AI and jobs: A global analysis of potential effects on job quantity and quality by Pawel Gmyrek of International Labour Organization. 

Session 2 on Just Transition toward the Green Economy (Sustainability) had the following research presentations: (1) How Will Waste Workers Benefit? Examining Just Transitions and Circular Economy Paradigms in the Waste Sector by Athena Mari Son of ILS; (2) Responding to Climate Change by Greening the Economy with Just Transition: A Way Forward for Principles-based, Inclusive, and Business Sustainable Corporate Social Responsibility (PBIBS CSR) in the Philippines by Julius Cainglet of the Federation of Free Workers (FFW). 

The lineup of researchers under Session 3 on Analysis and Impact Assessment of Labor Laws and Addressing Labor Exploitation (Inclusivity) includes the following: (1) Regulatory Impact Assessment of D.O. 174-17 by Jan Danielle Bondad and Mary Rosie Sto. Tomas and (2) Policy Analysis for Labor Inspection Program by Franchesca Rose Castillo. 

The conference also featured presentations from scholars affiliated with other research institutions namely: (1) Fairwork Philippines 2023: Protecting Worker Health, Safety and Security in the Philippine Platform Economy by Dr. Cheryll Ruth Soriano and Atty. Jayvy Gamboa of Fairwork Philippines; and (2) Future-proof work? The Experiences of Gig Economy Workers in the Philippines by Christopher Caboverde and John Paul Flaminiano of the Asian Institute of Management. 

A set of panel reactors consisting of experts from the tripartite partners shared their insights, perspectives, and policy recommendations on the research outputs during the panel discussion.  

Four (4) more ILS researchers will be presented in the 12th DOLE Research Conference webinar session, scheduled for December 13 to 14 via Zoom and live-streamed through ILS’ Facebook page.  

Since 2012, the research conference has served as a platform for DOLE researchers and other scholars to present studies on key labor issues to policymakers, government program managers, and tripartite partners toward enabling evidence-based policy and decision-making processes in promoting decent work in the country.