Saturday, March 26, 2011

Tech Jobs Leading the Way?

The Los Angeles Times reported recently on the dramatic upswing in hiring in Silicon Valley - regarded as ground zero for the tech industry's growth and innovation. And even more amazing is that Detroit is outpacing Silicon Valley in tech jobs. This is all nothing short of amazing. And it may signal a jobs revolution led by companies and venture capitalists in the tech field.

Top policymakers, economists, futurists and trend watchers all agree that most of the jobs that have gone overseas are not coming back. Instead, the jobs being created in their place are clearly knowledge-based. A recent article in Forbes revealed that by 2015, 60% of all new jobs will require skills held by 20% of the population. This is why there has been an insistence on "re-training the American worker".

Conventional wisdom says that the housing industry is the area that revitalizes and energizes our stagnant economy. Certainly, it has played a dominant part in periods following previous recessions. But this is a different era, and it may be time to reassess "the key indicators" of the past. Not because they're no longer relevant, but because of the emergence of the global, tech-centered, knowledge economy.

I could be completely wrong, forecasting a boom in tech jobs, but it looks that way. And when we start to robustly develop the green jobs (solar, wind, etc.) that I and others have championed for years, we'll see a significant decline in the unemployment rate. The tech and green industries could be a powerful combination for the long-term health of our economy.

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