Center for American Progress

Skills matter, but what matters more is who gets the skills and who gets left behind
In the News

Skills matter, but what matters more is who gets the skills and who gets left behind

Livia Lam and Daniella Zessoules explain how—given the changing nature of American jobs—universal, equitable workforce development is more important than ever.

Authors

  • Livia Lam
  • Daniella Zessoules

For a long time, the conventional wisdom has been that, if you aren’t working it’s because you don’t have the skills that employers need. But that explanation is oversimplified and incomplete.

Recent research shows that the story that was told about a mismatch in skills was really a story about how employers could be choosier when there were so many people desperate for work.

With the unemployment rate now below 4%, we have a greater understanding of how structural biases in job training as well as in hiring are keeping many people from working, or from getting the training that would develop their abilities and let them benefit from a healthier job market.

The above excerpt was originally published in MarketWatch. Click here to view the full article.

The positions of American Progress, and our policy experts, are independent, and the findings and conclusions presented are those of American Progress alone. A full list of supporters is available here. American Progress would like to acknowledge the many generous supporters who make our work possible.

Authors

Livia Lam

Senior Fellow; Director, Workforce Development

Daniella Zessoules

Research Assistant