I’ve written 3 different pieces on manufacturing employment (see Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3). Each of the pieces involve me playing around with different datasets, to figure out when manufacturing jobs were lost, and what may have caused the loss.
I haven’t actually described the larger project I’m working on over the summer, which is as follows: Despite the attention paid to the general issue of the loss of manufacturing jobs, little is known about how individual Canadian regions have fared since those jobs were lost. It remains unclear whether old manufacturing jobs have been replaced by comparable jobs (in terms of skill level and pay), or different jobs, marking a permanent shift in the nature of employment. In other words, it is unclear whether regional recoveries have been accompanied by fundamental shifts in employment, making the changes less cyclical and more structural. A projection of data and scenarios and evaluation of spatial differences will be critical to linking the future skills requirements to future jobs opportunities.
We will be analyzing trends in employment and unemployment by occupation across municipal regions in Canada, covering the period since the early 2000s. The analysis will draw conclusions about the implications of the findings for the future demand for skills by region.
I’m really looking forward to doing a deeper dive on this. I’ve already learned a considerable amount from just playing around with a few Statistics Canada tables.