Adult economic activity rate
Share of women in the adult labour force
Adult economic activity rate refers to the percentage of the population aged 15 and over, unless otherwise specified, which is economically active. The share of women in the adult labour force refers to the percentage of the economically active who are women.
Data on adult economic activity are compiled by the International Labour Office from a variety of national sources including labour force sample surveys, household surveys, population censuses and official estimates provided by national statistical services to ILO in publications and questionnaires.
The statistical concept of economically active population used here is that recommended by the International Conference of Labour Statisticians in 1982 and is designed to be consistent with the concept of economic production in the System of National Accounts. It defines as economically active all employed and unemployed persons, including those seeking work for the first time. It covers employers operating unincorporated enterprises, persons working on their own account, employees, unpaid contributing family workers, members of producers cooperatives and members of the armed forces. In the internationally recommended definition, production of primary products such as foodstuffs for own consumption and certain other non-monetary activities are considered economic activity and persons engaged in such production are to be considered economically active. In principle, any such work for as little as one hour a week is taken to define a person as economically active.
Specific elements of the standard concept of economically active population may differ substantially from country to country, such as the choice of time-reference period and the determination of minimum hours of work and unpaid family work, including production for own consumption. These differences may result, in particular, in the undercounting of women who are economically active. Also, in most countries the statistics of the economically active population relate only to employed and unemployed persons above a specified age while in some there is no such age provision in the definition of economic activity.
(Source: United Nations Statistics Division)