Gender skills gap 'closing'

24-05-2007

Gender skills gap 'closing'
Britons without qualifications now have a poorer chance to bag a job than two decades ago, according to a new report by the ESRC Research Centre on Skills, Knowledge and Organisational Performance (Skope).

The study shows that between 1986 and 2006 there has been a ten per cent fall in the proportion of jobs that need no qualification for entry.

In the same period, the importance of computer skills has become increasingly important, with almost half of all jobs requiring PC skills last year.

Women use computers more than men in the course of their employment, the report showed, but the type of work they do on PCs is generally less complicated than what is done by their male counterparts.

The report did however note a "convergence" between the skills required by jobs done by both genders.

Some 21 per cent of men now need degrees to do their job (up from 14 per cent in 1984), while the figure for women has risen from six per cent to 18 per cent.

Report co-author professor Francis Green of Kent University said the narrowing skills gap between men and women is "encouraging".

The UK's Equal Opportunities Commission recently welcomed government efforts to close the gender pay gap.

Its chairperson Jenny Watson called for employers to also "use women's skills and talents better".



Related categories: Skilled / Semi-skilled Manual.


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