Elgar original reference
Foreword: entrepreneurship andglobal growth
Foreword Foreword: entrepreneurship and global growth vi What the world needs now is jobs. Although global population growth is slowing, the exceptionally large cohorts born during the 1980s and 1990s – years of high fertility in most countries of the world – are now ready to join the labor market. Thus, we are still in the midst of a labor force boom that is not likely to end for another 30 or 40 years. Moreover, this is happening unevenly in different regions of the globe. In the developed world, the population in the 15–59 age group – the prime labor force years – is declining, and the labor force in the developed countries is expected to decline by almost 15 percent between 2010 and 2040. At the same time, the labor force in the developing world is still rising rapidly and is expected to increase by 50 percent by 2050. This excludes China, whose labor force has already stopped growing. In the least developed countries – the ‘bottom billion’ of the world’s population – the labor force is projected to double during this same time span. (See Figure 1.) In sub-Saharan Africa alone, the population aged 15–59 will increase from 455 million today to over one billion by 2050. Thus, essentially all of the growth in the world’s labor force in the coming decades will occur in the less developed countries, again excluding China. In these societies, the number of 15- to 59-year-olds will increase by 1.3 billion in the next 40 years. This...