The current international statistical standard definitions of informal sector and informal employment were adopted by the 15th and 17th International Conferences of Labour Statisticians in 1993 (informal sector) and 2003 (informal employment). The paper will briefly summarize and explain these definitions and describe how they are related and complement each other. For a number of countries from different regions of the world, which base their national statistical definitions of the informal sector and informal employment on the international standard definitions, the paper will present and analyse sex-disaggregated data on employment in the informal sector and informal employment. The data will be extracted from a statistical data base which the International Labour Office (ILO) has set up on the topic. The analysis will show the important role, which employment in the informal sector and other forms of informal employment play in employment creation - and, hence, poverty alleviation - in countries, and it will reveal gender-specific differences in this respect. The analysis will also show that there is some relationship between the level of economic and social development of countries and the prevailing types of informal employment: as the level of development rises, the share of employment in the informal sector tends to decrease and the share of informal employment outside the informal sector tends to increase.
Keywords: Informal employment; Informal sectior employment; Statistical data; Gender differences
Biography: Ralf Hussmanns is head of the Household Surveys Unit of the Department of Statistics of the International Labour Office (ILO). He was responsible for development of the current international standards on statistics of employment in the informal sector and informal employment. Mr. Hussmanns has written several articles, papers, etc. on the topic, and provided technical advice to the statistical offices of many countries.