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Located in the Millennium Development Goals under Target 1.B, the employment-to-population ratio is a statistical measure of the percentage of working age population (15-64) employed. Employment is defined according to international definitions and refers to being engaged in an economic activity during a specified reference period, or being temporarily absent from such an activity. Economic activity covers all production of goods and services for pay or profit or for use by own household.UNDG. (2003). Indicators for Monitoring the Millennium Development Goals. The United Nations. New York: The United Nations.
Target 1.B of the MDGs is to, “achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all, including women and young people”.United Nations. (2010). The Millennium Development Goals Report 2010: Statistical Annex. New York: The United Nations.
Male employment rates are generally higher than female employment rates. Female employment rates are often underestimated because many economic activities in which women dominate are not recorded as employment. This may influence the international comparability of employment rates.
Measuring employment is more straightforward where labor markets are well developed and a large proportion of the population gains its livelihood from a market economy. Thus, it may be more difficult to get an accurate employment-to-population ratio in less developed economies.
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