The COVID-19 induced economic crisis threatens to prolong and exacerbate pre-COVID trends of slow productivity growth in ECA countries, jeopardizing the ability of the countries to create new jobs, especially for women and youth. The key challenge is limited evidence from countries in ECA to inform the design of adequate policies. Improved evidence to design better productivity promoting policies and productivity-enhancing firm support programs are key to sustain a resilient and inclusive labor market recovery and while addressing the consequences of the COVID-19 for firms and workers in ECA.
A C-JET funded grant is being implemented by the World Bank in the ECA region, to provide evidence on productivity growth and the effect of digital technology adoption on productivity, focusing on businesses led by women and those more intensive in female-workers. Activities include analyzing productivity patterns, drivers, and the effects of digitization on firm performance and job creation. Stakeholder consultations will be held on technology adoption drivers, and policy recommendations will be disseminated. These activities and more, this grant aims to provide insights for better policies that promote technology adoption, productivity growth and resilient post-COVID economic transformation.