World Development Report 2019 engaged with the disruptions caused by innovation, technological progress and the fourth industrial revolution (4IR). It also assuaged apprehensions that machines would take over jobs in developed and developing countries in the future. This paper is located in debates on post- Fordism, a form of economic governance which manifests and progresses neoliberal globalization, and argues that post-Fordism intensified the casualization of labor and thus contributed to informality in Africa, but 4IR (and the disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic) provide opportunities to catapult Africa’s development. Past post-Fordist policies continue to generate major underlying conditions that impact the nature of work in Africa’s foreseeable and digital future. Some of the consequences assume an evolutionary path where formal firms create conditions for informality to flourish, through continuous innovations to avoid responsibility for workers’ welfare.
Keywords: Informal Economy, Casualization of Labor; Post-Fordism; Labor Standards; Future of Work; Fourth Industrial Revolution—4IR
Cite as: Christopher Changwe Nshimbi, Informality as a Sticky Sector in the Post-Pandemic Era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, Volume 2, AfJIEL, (2021), 88-99.