The International Institute for Labour Studies (IILS) is an autonomous facility of the International Labour Organization (ILO) whose objective is to promote policy research and public discussion on emerging labour issues. Its programmes draw upon the ILO's operational experience and its unique global data base in the areas of development policy and social legislation. The Institute has three major functions. It serves as a global forum for business, labour, and public authorities, to interact with academics and other opinion-makers to debate policy issues of common concern. Its international research networks explore the impact of labour institutions and changing patterns of production on economic development and social equity. And its educational programmes seek to develop the institutional capacities of ministries of labour and employers' and workers' organizations world wide.