Researchers: Workforce is more important than unemployment

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Fewer men “at their best age” participate in the workforce. It is wrong to concentrate on decreasing unemployment numbers when more people fall outside of the workforce, researchers say.


While the government is pleased that unemployment numbers are on their way down, thus makes it harder to use those same numbers for the Labor party (Ap) to create an impression of bad times in Norway, Aftenposten writes.

Simen Markussen, Labor research scientist at the Frischsenteret believes that the discussion about unemployment is a derailment and that the workforce is what is most important.

“It is not the absence of jobseekers who ensure welfare, but participation in the workforce,” he told the newspaper.

Markussen believes it is too early to cheer for fewer unemployed when the proportion of employed people falls. Since 1972, employment has fallen by 10 percentage points among men aged 25-54.

The researcher points to efficiency, technological changes and increased competence requirements as the reasons for the increasing externalization. He does not necessarily think it has a political party context.

“This is about long, heavy development, which happens partly regardless of the economic situation and what majority government party is in office,” he explains.

– Nobody has managed to make a new policy for this so far.


© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today