The World Bank strongly promotes social and emotional skills, together with cognitive and technical skills as key to productivity, employability, and social development. In 2008 the Bank, along with an inter-disciplinary team of Peruvian researchers, carried out a robust research initiative that measured the cognitive, social and emotional skills of the labor force in Peru and how those skills affect employability. The Word Bank embarked on this significant project in part due to economists’ recent discovery that a person’s social and emotional skills are at least as important as the cognitive capacity, knowledge or technical skills they may have to place themselves in a changing labor market - something employers, psychologists, many educators and parents have always known.
According to the World Bank, social and emotional skills such as the ability to be responsible, punctual, organized, persevering, interact with others, react and adapt to new situations and experiences, along with cognitive capacity are the abilities that are essential in a well educated labor force that is prepared to confront the challenges of the future.
The major findings of the study show that the labor market is increasingly constrained by the lack of socially, emotionally and cognitively skilled workers. These skills are demanded by employers and highly valued by the rapidly changing labor market of the 21st century global economy.
The goal of the research, report, and accompanying video presentation is to inform the development of policy to improve employability and social, emotional and cognitive skills formation. The World Bank hopes that this effort will inform the discussions of the future of social and employment policy among policy makers and the Peruvian society at large.
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