This chapter examines the extension of the International Labour Organization (ILO)’s technical assistance to countries beyond Europe. Under pressure from its membership, as well as exogenous political and economic events, the ILO’s “centre of gravity” underwent a marked shift to the “East,” including India, China, and Egypt, and to the “West”—the United States and Latin America. Simultaneously, the ILO’s focus expanded from the “purely social” work of setting and implementing international labor standards to embrace economic planning and rationalization. The chapter describes the interweaving of several lines of thought and activity to show how the ILO helped to construct an intellectual and institutional framework for a universal project of development that became entrenched in the decades following World War II, and within which technical assistance was a key technique of international intervention.
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