PPI In the News

Wall Street Journal: Tech Employment: More Diverse Than You Think

PPI Chief Economic Strategist Michael Mandel and Economist Diana Carew’s new report, Tech Opportunity for Minorities and Women: A Good News, Bad News Story, was featured in the Wall Street Journal on the growth in employment for minorities the tech labor market.

“Tech jobs are growing faster and are more diverse than people think,” said Michael Mandel, chief economic strategist at the Progressive Policy Institute and an author of the paper. He wrote it with Diana Carew, another economist at the Institute.

The authors point out that tech startups cluster in dense urban hubs, “creating inner-city jobs and positive local economic spillovers” in places with diverse populations, they write. “Few of today’s tech entrepreneurs want to put their start-ups out somewhere in a suburban office park. Instead, they place their new firms in places that are attractive to young tech workers. This has enormous potential benefits for high poverty urban populations, by promoting better education and social infrastructure.”

Progress for women is much slower. Of the 730,000 high-skill tech jobs created between 2009 and 2014, 26% went to women, who make up 47% of the total workforce. Part of the reason for the gap, Mandel said, is that science-oriented women are choosing to work in healthcare rather than tech. A Google study on the issue identified four key reasons why women say they are reluctant to pursue tech careers: Social encouragement, self-perception, academic exposure, and career perception.

Continue reading at the Wall Street Journal.