employment - ProFile 2 UNIT 3 Employment SECTORS OF THE...

Info iconThis preview shows page 1. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Unformatted text preview: ProFile 2 UNIT 3 Employment SECTORS OF THE ECONOMY Traditionally, economists divide the economy into three different sectors: Primary sector – agriculture and extraction: meaning mining of all kinds, fishing and forestry. Even if these activities are highly mechanized and rely on sophisticated equipment, they are all involved in producing primary materials, which may then be transformed into other things. Secondary sector – manufacturing and construction. Tertiary sector – services. Services are not restricted to areas such as restaurants and tourism. The service sector includes retail, banking, insurance, transport, health, and education. product changes hands, as is the case in tourism, insurance, or training. By remaining in the forefront of these industries, Britain has managed to redress the problems caused by the erosion of its industrial sector. SERVICES UNDER ATTACK Despite the large number of people employed in services, they are no longer immune to foreign competition and the effects of globalization. Lots of back-office functions have been sent to far-away countries thanks to developments in telephony and Internet technology. In Britain, many call centres, which appeared such a beacon of hope for areas of high unemployment, have closed their doors as their functions have moved halfway across the globe. WHAT ROLE FOR MANUFACTURING? THE DRIFT TOWARDS SERVICES A feature of more developed Western cultures is that there has been a move from the primary sector and manufacturing towards services. The more affluent and successful countries become, the fewer people are engaged in agriculture. The trend is towards larger and larger farms, employing fewer people. This has led to the devastation of the more rural parts of Europe as young people leave their birthplace and work on the land to go to cities. Countries which do employ a large part of their population in agriculture are often engaged in subsistence farming. In Western Europe, an overwhelming number of people are employed in the services sector. Indeed, profits and return on investment are generally much higher now in retail than in manufacturing. In other words, there is more money to be made from importing a microwave oven from the Far East, than in the manufacture of one at home. This should not, however, be seen as a negative process. For countries such as the United Kingdom, invisible earners are an essential part of keeping the balance of trade in a healthy surplus. Invisible earners are businesses where no physical See the ProFile Student’s site: www.oup.com/elt/profile With the global adoption of intermediate technologies used in areas such as textiles and footwear, these traditional industries have all but disappeared in Western European countries. They mostly survive in niche and luxury markets. More developed countries try to maintain a competitive lead with the development of new and higher technologies such as IT, aeronautics, biotechnology, and pharmaceuticals. EMPLOYABILITY Globalization and foreign competition have led to many jobs in traditional industries such as iron, steel, and shipbuilding being lost in Western Europe and North America. Disenfranchised workers have had to retrain and move into new fields. Corby, once at the heart of Britain’s steel industry has become a hub for warehousing and logistics and employs many ex-steel workers. Flexibility, and the willingness to learn new skills are essential if people wish to remain employable throughout their working lives. Stephen R. Covey in his The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People talks about ‘sharpening the saw’, in other words thinking about your own renewal and development professionally, and personally. Photocopiable © Oxford University Press ...
View Full Document

This note was uploaded on 12/12/2010 for the course RBS BCN taught by Professor Dekoe during the Spring '10 term at Rotterdam Business School.

Ask a homework question - tutors are online