Green Public Employment Programmes and the Future of Work

PEPs as a transformative vehicle for economic, social and environmental benefits for a Just Transition

International executive course
9—13 April 2018
DoubleTree Hotel, Woodstock, Cape Town

Predictions of climate change and its effects pose massive challenges to governments both in developed and developing countries. Vulnerability to climate change is socially differentiated and those identified as most vulnerable to climate risk are those already economically and socially vulnerable. Inequality is further exacerbated by the potential impacts from climate change, protracted conflicts and increasing technological advances which will change the future of work.

International aid is also dwindling with the number of crises financial institutions are having to attend to. National governments have to step in to fill the important role of employer of last resort especially in situations where sufficient jobs are not available. Yet at the same time the potential for using public investments as a catalyst - not only to create more jobs, but also to create integrated approaches to implement sectoral strategies which together can create better synergies - are not sufficiently being used to absorb the surplus labour in many countries. South Africa can offer examples of this integrated approach.

Investments in physical, financial, natural, human and social capital are not only necessary, they also have significant potential to contribute to building climate resilience and disaster risk management. Labour-based public employment programmes (public works) can restore and protect the productive capacity of lands, build resilient infrastructure capable of addressing climate change and natural disasters and at the same time, create livelihood and income security for the most

This course will be presented by UCT’s Graduate School of Development Policy and Practice (GSDPP) in collaboration with the International Labour Organization’s Employment Intensive Investment Programme (EIIP).


What will participants gain from attending the course?
The overall objective of this course is to lay out the conceptual and strategic framework for the promotion of integrated approaches that create jobs, income security, and climate resilience through green works and PEPs. More specifically, the course will focus on current policy debates arising from climate change adaptation and the implementation of a just transition for all through such labour based public employment programmes. It will include case studies from different national PEPs that are focusing creating jobs while protecting the environment and biodiversity.


The programme will include sessions on the following:

  • Policy innovation: international case studies
  • Public investment and employment: how to get the most out of limited budgets
  • PEPs contributing to the SDGs and Universal Social Protection 2030
  • Community-driven models and participatory approaches
  • Decent work and labour standards
  • The technology marketplace: demonstrations of innovative uses of appropritate technology
  • How PEPs contribute to the Future of Work as part of the transformative agenda
  • Interrelations between public policy, climate change and resilience


Who should apply?
The course is open to: policy makers; planners; senior and middle-level officials from national agencies and programmes concerned with public employment.
To participate you need to:

  • Have experience in public works, employment policy and/or environmental issues
  • Be in a position to influence and/or apply new approaches using public investments


Course fees are $1250 (one thousand two hundred and fifty USD) or ZAR 14 600 (fourteen thousand six hundred ZAR) per delegate, payable in advance. Course fees include course attendance, course materials, meals and parking. Please note that transport and accommodation need to be booked and paid for by your department/organization.

For more information please contact Hannah Diaz on 021 650 1459 or
Graduate School of Development Policy and Practice
Strategic leadership for Africa’s public sector