Upskilling and Polarisation in the Australian Labour Market: A Simple Analysis
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National and international studies have shown consistent upskilling trends in the labour market. While this claim is true at aggregate levels, when employment growth and total hours worked are disaggregated into permanent and casual full-time and part-time employment for men and women, upskilling trends are inconsistent. The analysis shows that permanent male and female full-time employment exhibited clear signs of upskilling both in terms of employment growth and hours worked but this was not the case in casual full-time work for men and women. Part-time casual and permanent work showed clear signs of polarisation and downskilling for men and women. These polarisation trends suggest that workers who do not possess high-level skills will face increasing levels of difficulty and uncertainty in the labour market, with an adverse impact on both household and individual inequality.