Informality and Wage Setting Policies in Latin America

Date: Tuesday, September 20, 2022
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. EDT

Location: Off Campus (Insper Learning Institution, São Paulo, Brazil) and Online via Zoom/YouTube

This daylong event is an in-person academic conference and policy discussion at the Insper Institute of Education and Research in São Paulo, Brazil; the event will also be live-streamed. Please continue to check this event page for the most up-to-date information.

For decades, many Latin American economies have displayed low rates of economic growth and stagnant labor productivity accompanied by high and increasing levels of income and wage inequality.

These economies are also characterized by costly and burdensome labor regulations that are imperfectly enforced, which led to the high and persistent levels of informality observed in the region. While this increases the level of flexibility, it may also induce less investment in human capital, higher earnings volatility, greater misallocation of resources across firms and sectors, and result in lower aggregate productivity and growth. Moreover, informal workers typically do not have access to social security and unemployment insurance, and they are not covered by minimum wage legislation.

Leading scholars will discuss issues related to wage setting and labor market informality in Latin America during the academic conference, which will be followed by a moderated policy discussion combining a number of these scholars with a group of policymakers with specific expertise for this region.

How to RSVP

Online: For those who wish to join online, please RSVP via Zoom. The event will also be live-streamed on YouTube.

In-person: For those who wish to attend in person, please RSVP via email to Mayara Almeida Pedro at The in-person event will take place at Insper Learning Institution, R. Quatá, 300 – Vila Olímpia, São Paulo – SP, 04546-042, Brazil.

Participants Include

Professor David Card is the Class of 1950 Professor of Economics at the University of California, Berkeley and the recipient of the 2021 Nobel Prize in Economics.

Professor Pinelopi Goldberg is the Elihu Professor of Economics at Yale University and was the chief economist of the World Bank Group from 2018 to 2020.

Ilan Goldfajn is the former president of the Central Bank of Brazil and current director of the International Monetary Fund’s Western Hemisphere Department.

Santiago Levy is a nonresident senior fellow with the Global Economy and Development Program at the  Brookings Institution and served as the vice president for sectors and knowledge at the Inter-American Development Bank from 2008 to 2018.

Mauricio Cárdenas is visiting senior research scholar at the Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University SIPA and former minister of finance and public credit and minister of mines and energy of Colombia.