Digital economy

Digital Economy and Social Security Observatory

The Digital Economy will profoundly transform our daily life, how we work and how we live.

The Observatory will provide ISSA members with an understanding of the opportunities and the challenges it will present to social security administrations.

It will look at this transformation from two angles: the changing environment in which social security institutions evolve and how Social Security institutions themselves will be impacted and can respond to these challenges.


Social impact

The digital economy is transforming the way social interaction and personal relationships are conducted.

The wide range of new social networks has tremendous impact on societies’ collective behaviours, some negative, others positive. On the one hand, technology breaks down physical barriers and provides countless possibilities to communicate, interact and meet people without consideration for their countries of residence, social origin, or time constraint.

On the other hand, technology enables the individual to withdraw into to a virtual world where it is sometimes difficult to distinguish facts from fiction, opening the door to manipulation. Those who do not have the access or the ability to navigate the digital world are becoming outcasts – creating a digital divide.

The digital economy will see significant changes in the workplace where those with less education and training at higher risk of being permanently side-lined and creating a social stigma and stress for the individual, the family and the community. Though on the other hand social media has fostered an increased awareness of key social challenges facing society such as reducing inequalities, and lifting people out of isolation or poverty.

Today social security institutions must find ways to leverage technology to break down the barriers of isolation, the digital divide and mitigate the social impact of dramatic adjustments in the labour markets. They must harness the technology to protect the social investment throughout the life course particularly during key transition: from early childhood, to education, to the workplace, job loss and re-entry in the workforce, sickness and disability and retirement.

Social security institutions must explore ways to harness data to perform predictive analysis of risks and to design prevention measures that will preserve the social investment. They must identify the new risks faced by the individual, the family and the community to adapt its programme, with a view of empowerment.

Ten global challenges for social security

Media Monitor Media Monitor

19 January 2018

 JeuneAfrique (19.01.2018)  Le Parlement marocain s'apprête à examiner un amendement à la loi sur la sécurité sociale, qui prévoit une transmission numérique des données des plus grosses entreprises et un meilleur contrôle des déclarations médicales. Faciliter la relation avec les entreprises et se donner les moyens d’un contrôle plus efficace… La Caisse nationale de sécurité sociale (CNSS) fait d’une pierre deux coups. Avec le projet de loi adopté en Conseil de gouvernement et qui devrait être prochainement soumis au Parlement, le régime de sécurité sociale, dont le cadre remonte à 1972, fait un saut dans la modernité.

19 January 2018

 Euronews (18.01.2018)  Advances in technology are having a big impact on a broad range of industries, provoking intense debate about the future of work.  Workers across the world are increasingly aware of what many consider an existential threat to a wide array of jobs. Safe and efficient autonomous vehicles, for example, may make truck drivers obsolete in the not too distant future. At the same time, advocates of technology argue, people around the planet are finding new and often better opportunities thanks to continuing industrial innovation. The world of work is changing, from Silicon Valley to the Nile Valley, where Spotlight visited to discover how developments in agri-technology are revolutionising crop cultivation.

18 January 2018

EuBulletin. (02.01.2018) Over the past 20 years, digitalization has been transforming the contemporary job market, unleashing fear among workers for the future of their jobs. Many day-to-day activities have been likewise transformed by technology and digital economy – ranging from Uber replacing taxi, Airbnb replacing hotels or robots replacing blue-collar manufacturing. Some predictions suggest that digitalization and robotization will cause job losses of as much as 50% of all jobs over the next few decades.

17 January 2018

Euractiv (10.01.2018) Labour markets have undergone significant change over the past decade and all indications are that this will accelerate in the future. In order to respond to these shifts and make labour markets fit for the realities of life and work in the 21st century we need a complete overhaul of the social structure underpinning the way that we organise, classify, support and regulate work. Only by creating open, enabling, inclusive and sustainable labour markets can we drive the growth and competitiveness needed for our economies to flourish.

16 January 2018

 South China Morning Post (16.01.2018) Government trials in 26 cities will have Tencent’s WeChat replace traditional state-issued social security cards with digital version tied to users’ accounts  WeChat, the popular mobile messaging, social media and payments platform run by Tencent Holdings, is poised to become further entrenched in everyday life in China under a new programme that adapts it as a user’s electronic social security card.

14 January 2018

Good Practices in Social Security - ISSA (November 2017) - The 2017 ISSA Good Practice Award for Americas has been presented to the Social Insurance Bank, Uruguay for an innovation that extends social security coverage to workers in the sharing economy.

8 January 2018

Reuters (20.12.2017) Uber Technologies Inc should be classified as a transport service and regulated like other taxi operators, the European Union’s top court said in a landmark ruling on Wednesday that could impact other online businesses in Europe. Uber, which allows passengers to summon a ride through an app on their smartphones, has transformed the taxi industry since its launch in 2011 and now operates in more than 600 cities globally.In the latest of a series of legal battles, Uber had argued it was simply a digital app that acted as an intermediary between drivers and customers looking for a ride and so should fall under lighter EU rules for online services.

19 December 2017

Sitra (September 2017)Towards a predictive society Public administration in Finland is undergoing major systemic change. How can one of the most efficient administrative entities in the world aim to make the everyday lives of people and companies easier through co-operation? Solutions for this will be sought through ecosystem forums – together.

10 December 2017

Background paper for Estonian Presidency Conference ‘Future of Work: Making It e-Easy‘, 13-14 September 2017

7 December 2017

(09.11.2017) Blockchain technology has huge potential to disrupt a wide range of industries, ranging from data management, security and healthcare as a few examples.

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