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The Institute has a succinctly stated vision to be “a globally reputed institution and centre of excellence in labour research and training committed to enhancing the quality of work and work relations.” 
 
In pursuit of this vision, the Institute’s mission is to “bring labour and labour relations as the central feature in development agenda”, through: 
  • Addressing issues of transformations in the world of work;
  • Disseminating knowledge, skills and attitudes to major social partners and stakeholders concerned with labour and employment;
  • Undertaking research studies and training interventions of world-class standards; and 
  • Building understanding and partnerships with globally respected institutions involved with labour”. 
 
Building on its vision, the Institute’s mandate focuses on six major activities: 
  • Research
  • Training and education
  • Publications
  • Library and information systems
  • Consultancy
  • Networking and collaborations
 
The vision and mission statements of the Institute are as relevant now as they were when originally conceived. They form the basis for the following review of the mandated activities and the suggestions for reorientation and fine-tuning them.