The Global Informal Workforce: Priorities for Inclusive Growth


July 29, 2021

The informal economy is usually defined as business activities by unregistered firms, but it also includes activities by registered firms that are concealed from authorities. (iStock by Getty Images/AfricaImages)

In This Episode

60 percent of the working-age population worldwide operates in the informal sector. A new book titled The Global Informal Workforce, Priorities for Inclusive Growth uses IMF research to study the causes and effects of the high levels of informality in economies across the globe. The book covers interactions between the informal economy, labor and product markets, gender equality, fiscal institutions and outcomes, social protection, and financial inclusion. In this podcast, co-editors Corinne Deléchat and Leandro Medina say the pandemic has exposed the vulnerabilities of the informal workforce. Transcript

The book is available at

CORINNE DELÉCHAT is a division chief in the IMF’s African Department.

LEANDRO MEDINA is a senior economist in the IMF’s Strategy, Policy, and Review Department.

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Bruce Edwards

International Monetary Fund

Bruce Edwards produces the IMF podcast program. He's an award-winning audio producer and journalist who's covered armed conflicts, social unrest, and natural disasters from all corners of the world. He believes economists have an important role in solving the world's problems and aspires to showcase their research in every IMF podcast.

Rhoda Metcalfe


Rhoda Metcalfe is an independent journalist and audio producer. Her reporting on the armed conflict in Colombia in the late 90s, as well as her work in Egypt, Turkey and South Africa has won several awards. She now produces podcasts and radio features from Washington DC and is a regular contributor to the IMF Podcast program.