Car Parts, Celery & The Labor Market : Planet Money Summer School : NPR

Illustration by James Yang for NPR

James Yang for NPR

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James Yang for NPR

Illustration by James Yang for NPR

James Yang for NPR

There is a ton in a occupation.

What a man or woman does for a residing can say a great deal about their passions, regions of experience, and life style. Similarly, the varieties of work staying established or missing in the overall economy can tell us a ton about the course we are all heading.

About the final hundred many years or so, there has been a large change in our national financial identity in massive aspect pushed by the changeover from an economy based on labor-intense, doing the job-course, producing work opportunities that generate goods to an economic system a lot more driven by the company sector, where by additional and extra careers demand specialised schooling or bigger instruction.

This changeover has upsides. Employment are inclined to be significantly less hazardous, numerous merchandise are having less expensive, and a lot of staff have accessibility to comforts that a turn-of-the-century manufacturing unit employee could not have imagined even in their wildest goals.

Even so, our shiny new ability-based mostly economic system also suggests dwindling job prospects for employees devoid of obtain to the schooling or education to permit them to compete for high paying out roles with a ton of extensive-time period career stability.

Present day lesson is a story from the frontlines of an economic transition. We travel to a manufacturing unit, when the image of our strong production financial state, exactly where today, all of the forces influencing the transition are colliding at once and staff and enterprise homeowners alike are remaining forced to change on the fly. We get inside of the choice creating method of when to exchange a employee with a machine.

Then we journey to a farm where even increased wages are not more than enough to attract the personnel needed. Intercontinental pressure and cheaper food from abroad prevents greater wages. We are going to glimpse how immigration and trade plan influence wages and the supply of labor… and of celery.

Ideas we cover:

  • Cyclical Unemployment 
  • Structural Unemployment 
  • Proficient Personnel and Low-Wage Workers 
  • Performance Wages 


Seem in the news for tales about hirings and layoffs. What kinds of careers are remaining misplaced? What variety are currently being received? Are the task losses a outcome of structural unemployment or cyclical unemployment? Display us your conclusions on social media with #PMSummerSchool.

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Tunes: I Need You, Pacific Matter, Psychistan Surf, Sleeper Agent, Interior Desert Blues & Take This Work & Shove It, Johnny Paycheck

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