The German Labour Market in the Year 2030
The results show that Germany will transform from a service-oriented into a knowledge-oriented economy with new jobs in business services, financial services and education, health and social services. Manufacturing, trade and transport, and public service, however, will clearly reduce the number of jobs. The growth potential of the German economy will be determined by skills shortages: The higher the investments in human capital the better the opportunities for growth.
The German Labour Market in the Year 2030
Task and methods
The German Ministry for Labour and Social Affairs (BMAS) commissioned Economix on 2nd November, 2011 to undertake the project "Analysis of the future demand and supply of the labour market based on a computerised model". According to the project description set out by BMAS, the project should provide "regular and transparent, detailed and scientifically founded estimations for supply and demand in the labour market in Germany". For this purpose, a forecast model was to be developed which would serve as an early warning system in order to better assess possible labour shortages and to derive targeted measures to safeguard skilled labour. We herewith submit our main report for 2012. It is supplemented by an expert and scenario report and a methodological report. 1)
Taking into account the strong volatility caused by the financial and economic crisis, it was clear that the task set before us could not merely be solved by relying on an econometric model of the past. Instead, we had to proceed on the assumption that there will be various structural upheavals originating from the aftermath of the crisis, the advancing globalisation of the economy and the labour markets, and from social changes. Our methodical answer was thus a combination of qualitative future scenarios and mathematical forecasting procedures so that the forecast of the fundamental changes in the economy and in society could be implemented into robust quantitative projections.
Two alternative scenarios for the future were developed based on the findings of seven expert reports. This included globalisation, technological change, work organisation, climate change and above all the effect of demographic change on educational and employment behaviour of the German population. These findings were discussed in a workshop with the client in April 2012, where they were condensed into scenarios and used as a basis for the quantitative models.
These models are based on the labour market models developed by Cambridge Econometrics, the Warwick Institute for Employment Research and the Research Centre for Education and the Labour Market, which are also used for the qualifications forecast of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training CEDEFOP. In the model versions which have been specifically developed for Germany, 44 economic sectors, 88 occupational groups and 27 technical fields of vocational training were distinguished.
In total, seven modules of the quantitative model simultaneously estimate labour supply and labour demand and thus, take into account the various interrelations in the labour market. It was important to us to depict the adaptive responses in labour supply caused by changes in labour demand and, likewise, the response of labour demand to emerging bottlenecks. This is the only way to stop the forecast from lapsing into a rigid and increasingly unrealistic world. This also distinguishes our approach from other forecast models, which often use separate supply and demand estimations. By using simulations we have illustrated the effects of the assumed changes in different areas of our investigations.
We have stepped into new territory by measuring labour market flows. This is the first time that they have been shown and predicted in a detailed occupational and qualification-specific classification. The assessment of labour inflows and labour outflows was relevant for measuring the labour shortages and for the analysis of the adjustment process with regard to supply and demand.
Our forecast includes possible reactions of policy actors, companies and workforces with regard to the developments. This especially includes reactions to labour shortages over the next 20 years due to demographics. We therefore expect there to be further efforts to implement the German Ministry's skills strategy (Fachkrä