Have you ever used your smartphone to hail a taxi? Order in lunch? Or to find the help you need, whether from a cleaner or a childminder? If you have, then like millions of people, you probably did so via digital platforms. Every day people are connecting online, whether to use or provide myriad services.

Step into the light: OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría (left) and Prime Minister Peter Pelligrini of the Slovak Republic, in a curtain-raiser video focusing  on the digital transformation to launch OECD Week 2019 with this. Watch it at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jFsXYQY6ebo

What is the relevance of international co-operation in our world today? In the face of world's challenges, like climate change, access to quality education and inequality, why is it important to not work in isolation and to seek shared solutions?

Are we ready for the future of work? How can we forge a new societal contract? What must be done to strengthen international co-operation and bolster trust? These are just some of the key issues up for debate at the 20th anniversary OECD Forum 2019, 20-21 May. Join us and let's build the future together.

OECD countries are at a critical juncture, as they face deep and often widening inequalities between people and places. Responding to the concerns of communities that feel left behind is a political priority. Policymakers need to focus their efforts more sharply on the places where people live ensuring a more even distribution of services and opportunities. As the OECD Regional Development Policy Committee (RDPC) celebrates its 20-year anniversary, its clear voice is needed more than ever.

Relaxed learning environment at Helsinki University Library. ©Shutterstock

Finland has consistently been one of the most successful countries in global education rankings. For some, its name has become synonymous with educational excellence. While Finland is not alone in achieving world-class educational standards, what makes the country unique is that all of its schools are, effectively, elite schools: performance differences between Finnish schools account for just 5% of the total variation in student performance.

Finland prepares to join: OECD Secretary-General Thorkil Kristensen (right) welcomes Tankmar Horn, Undersecretary of State, Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. ©OECD Observer archive 1969

Finland marks its 50th anniversary as an OECD member country on 28 January 2019. Though not a founding member when the OECD commenced in September 1961, Finland’s interest in joining was never in doubt. However, it adopted a cautious approach.

©Hervé Cortinat/OECD

Hecate is one of Greek mythology’s many intriguing goddesses. A three-headed character, she is associated with sorcery, but also with boundaries and walls, as well as crossroads, entranceways, gates and doorways, and lights. She is depicted carrying torches and keys, so that while some historians see Hecate as a protector who bestows prosperity, others compare her to the Roman Janus, a symbol of openings and new beginnings, able to light the way ahead.

©Jeff Fisher

Catch up with the OECD’s initiatives on gender, including for International Women’s Day 8 March, by visiting www.oecd.org/gender.

These extracts from blogs are courtesy of OECD Insights, OECD Education & Skills Today, OECD Ecoscope, Wikigender, Wikiprogress and other content and social media platforms managed by the OECD.  

Exposure to a chemical can lead to adverse effects on the health of people and wildlife. 

Toyin Ajayi, Chief Medical Officer, Commonwealth Care Alliance (CCA) ©Marco Illuminati/OECD

People-centred healthcare was the focus of the Policy Forum and Ministerial Meeting on the Future of Health, 16-17 January 2017, at which ministers, professionals and experts from over 40 countries shared ideas and practices on issues such as access, technology, metrics and costs.

©Claude Monet/Musée Marmottan Paris/Wikiart.org

Our thoughts are with the victims, their families and their friends, of the murderous attack on Westminster Bridge on Wednesday 22 March 2017. 

Today 25 March 2017 marks the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, the agreement that laid the ground for today's European Union, in which people, goods, services and capital can move freely among member states. The European Commission has been involved in the work of our organisation and its different bodies since the OECD began in 1961, thanks to a protocol to the OECD Convention. Both institutions share common values and aims, including promoting peaceful international co-operation, respect of human dignity, liberty, democracy and equality among our countries and people.

The OECD’s Toby Green (right) receives the Academic and Professional Publisher Award from Tim Gillett of Research Information at the London Book Fair, 14 March 2017 ©Rights reserved

OECD Publishing, which is the publishing brand and agency of the OECD, has won the 2017 Academic and Professional Publisher Award at the London Book Fair, held at the Olympia in London on 14 March. The award, which is organised in partnership with the Publishers Association, was presented under the International Excellence Awards, with the support of Research Information, a print and online magazine from Europa Science Ltd.

Poland, 22 November 2016; Hungary, 7 May 2016

These extracts from blogs are courtesy of OECD Insights, OECD Education & Skills Today, OECD Ecoscope, Wikigender, Wikiprogress and other content and social media platforms managed by the OECD.   

These extracts from blogs are courtesy of OECD Insights, OECD Education & Skills Today, OECD Ecoscope, Wikigender, Wikiprogress and other content and social media platforms managed by the OECD.

©OECD

Inequalities, productivity and the digital economy are major concerns among citizens and policy makers, and these issues guided the key cross-cutting discussions at the OECD Forum on 31 May-1 June

President Michelle Bachelet of Chile and OECD Secretary General Angel Gurría ©Julien Daniel / OECD

The 2016 OECD Ministerial Council Meeting (MCM) was held at the OECD headquarters in Paris on Wednesday and Thursday 1-2 June 2016, back to back with the OECD Forum, which started on 31 May (www.oecd.org/forum).

Ugo Rossi ©Rights reserved

Since 1982 the OECD Programme on Local Economic and Employment Development (LEED) has advised governments and local authorities on how to respond to economic challenges in a fast-changing world. One key initiative in this regard came in 2003 when it set up the Trento Centre for Local Development, with the Italian government and the Autonomous Province of Trento in Italy, with a mission to help build capacity and inform policy actions. So far the Trento Centre has issued more than 127 reviews, studies, guides and manuals; over 21,000 local development policy makers and practitioners have also benefited from Trento Centre capacity development seminars and activities.

These extracts from blogs are courtesy of OECD Insights, OECD Education & Skills Today, OECD Ecoscope, Wikigender, Wikiprogress and other content and social media platforms managed by the OECD. 

Filippo Grandi ©Andrew Wheeler/OECD

At a joint high-level conference in Paris in January, the heads of the OECD and UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) called on governments to scale up their efforts to help refugees integrate and contribute to the societies and economies of Europe.

Seven years after creating the Wikigender portal in English, the OECD Development Centre launched the French version on 16 December 2015. The French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development, International Francophone Organisation and the French Development Agency were among those associated with the launch.

Jean Julien

On behalf of the OECD, Secretary-General Angel Gurría tonight condemned in the strongest terms the barbaric terrorist attacks perpetrated in Paris on the evening of 13 November. He expressed his most heartfelt condolences and solidarity with France and the French people, the City of Paris and its citizens following these terrible attacks.

World leaders are facing a fundamental dilemma: take strong action to address the risks associated with climate change, OR see the ability to limit this threat slip from their grasp. #COP21 in Le Bourget Paris, late 2015 is our chance for positive action...

Economic data

GDP growth: +0.6% Q1 2019 year-on-year
Consumer price inflation: 2.3% May 2019 annual
Trade: +0.4% exp, -1.2% imp, Q1 2019
Unemployment: 5.2% July 2019
Last update: 8 July 2019

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  • MCM logo
  • The following communiqué and Chair’s statement were issued at the close of the OECD Council Meeting at Ministerial level, this year presided by the Slovak Republic.
  • Food production will suffer some of the most immediate and brutal effects of climate change, with some regions of the world suffering far more than others. Only through unhindered global trade can we ensure that high-quality, nutritious food reaches those who need it most, Angel Gurría, Secretary-General of the OECD, and José Graziano da Silva, Director-General of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, write in their latest Project Syndicate article. Read the article here.
  • Globalisation will continue and get stronger, and how to harness it is the great challenge, says OECD Secretary-General Gurría on Bloomberg TV. Watch the interview here.
  • OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría with UN Secretary-General António Guterres at the 73rd Session of the UN General Assembly, in New York City.
  • The new OECD Observer Crossword, with Myles Mellor. Try it online!
  • Listen to the "Robots are coming for our jobs" episode of The Guardian's "Chips with Everything podcast", in which The Guardian’s economics editor, Larry Elliott, and Jeremy Wyatt, a professor of robotics and artificial intelligence at the University of Birmingham, and Jordan Erica Webber, freelance journalist, discuss the findings of the new OECD report "Automation, skills use and training". Listen here.
  • Do we really know the difference between right and wrong? Alison Taylor of BSR and Susan Hawley of Corruption Watch tell us why it matters to play by the rules. Watch the recording of our Facebook live interview here.
  • Has public decision-making been hijacked by a privileged few? Watch the recording of our Facebook live interview with Stav Shaffir, MK (Zionist Union) Chair of the Knesset Committee on Transparency here.
  • Can a nudge help us make more ethical decisions? Watch the recording of our Facebook live interview with Saugatto Datta, managing director at ideas42 here.
  • The fight against tax evasion is gaining further momentum as Barbados, Côte d’Ivoire, Jamaica, Malaysia, Panama and Tunisia signed the BEPS Multilateral Convention on 24 January, bringing the total number of signatories to 78. The Convention strengthens existing tax treaties and reduces opportunities for tax avoidance by multinational enterprises.
  • Globalisation’s many benefits have been unequally shared, and public policy has struggled to keep up with a rapidly-shifting world. The OECD is working alongside governments and international organisations to help improve and harness the gains while tackling the root causes of inequality, and ensuring a level playing field globally. Please watch.
  • Checking out the job situation with the OECD scoreboard of labour market performances: do you want to know how your country compares with neighbours and competitors on income levels or employment?
  • Trade is an important point of focus in today’s international economy. This video presents facts and statistics from OECD’s most recent publications on this topic.
  • The OECD Gender Initiative examines existing barriers to gender equality in education, employment, and entrepreneurship. The gender portal monitors the progress made by governments to promote gender equality in both OECD and non-OECD countries and provides good practices based on analytical tools and reliable data.
  • Interested in a career in Paris at the OECD? The OECD is a major international organisation, with a mission to build better policies for better lives. With our hub based in one of the world's global cities and offices across continents, find out more at www.oecd.org/careers .
  • Visit the OECD Gender Data Portal. Selected indicators shedding light on gender inequalities in education, employment and entrepreneurship.

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