Ronan Lyons | Personal Website
Ronan Lyons | Personal Website

More than half of all jobs for young men have disappeared

  • Up to two thirds of young men in Limerick now signing on ,

    […] to two thirds of young men in Limerick now signing on The thread title is from a post called: More than half of all jobs for young men have disappeared The author estimates over 100,000 job losses from a young male workforce of 175,000 at the peak, […]

    • Treasa ,

      Part of me is screaming “statement of the obvious” here.

      I seem to recall some figures as unemployment first started to rise that for every 1 woman losing her job, 7 men were losing theirs. Women were more likely to be going into public service roles while men were more likely to be losing their construction related jobs was the rationale at the time I believe.

      The problem for me is that while I agree in principle with what you’re saying, I’m at a loss to predict what kind of jobs we can get to absorb those who went into construction. I know that construction related jobs bled into back office related roles such as law/accounting/architecture but again, options for career change are somewhat limited there.

      I think this involves a lot more long term planning and not so much in terms of industry because historically, industries come and go over time as society changes. I don’t want to say “progresses”. Either way I’ve long felt that the education system needs to be tackled in terms of how we use it to feed into the economic future of the country.

      Currently, there’s a tendency for bandwagon hopping with each generation having an industry which is held to be a good industry to get into because it’s good for employment or money. When I left college, IT was the catch all career of choice. 10 years later it appears to have been construction.

      This sort of attitude to jobs and training isn’t really sustainable.

      • Ronan Lyons ,

        Hi Treasa,
        Some may be familiar with the scale of the problem here or, as you point out, not be surprised given how many were in construction, but I had yet to hear of a job destruction rate of almost 60% (closer to 70% if there has been net emigration of young men of the order of 25,000 since April). Plus, no harm to keep it in the public eye – well at least, do my small part in that anyway.

        On your more substantive point, I totally agree. The final paragraph is not meant to suggest that ensuring our education system can easily change to match current and future labour market needs. Rather it is meant to make sure the link between what’s happening now and where we’ll be in ten years time are fundamentally connected. The focus has to be on future-proof skills, rather than future-proof industries, particularly as internationally mobile projects are aggregating by activity and not by sector.

        IT as an industry was a late-1990s plaything alright, but IT literacy will be as fundamental as basic literacy and numeracy for an increasing proportion of jobs.
        Good comment, thanks,


        • Things that strike me » Blog Archive » Education as a tool for affecting the future. ,

          […] Ronan Lyons has a piece on his blog which is worth a read even though it’s not really anything majorly new in terms of what anyone with an interest in the economic well-being of Ireland should be aware of. He has pointed out that we’re losing a generation of young men to unemployment and education. […]

          • Joseph ,

            “The obvious next question, though, is whether the qualifications we are providing for our young people – men and women – are what a 21st Century labour market needs.”

            I am about to launch into a thesis on this. First step is to find out what passes for international best practice in this area (career planning/guidancer for young people) and whether it’s actually fit for the 21st century. Joseph

            • John Heavey ,

              Nothing to worry about though Ronan, we’ve turned the corner and have a march down O’Connell Street in 2016 to look forward to. It’s all good in Biffostan.

              • Kieran ,

                Since the nominal value of the punt broke above parity with sterling 2 years ago, employment has decreased by a quarter of 1 million.The same scenario looms over the next 2 years.We don’t have a large enough pop to sustain lots of domestice services such as shops and cafes.Employers nwill always hire people with lots of experience-when did anybody last see a half decent job aimed @ recruiting a school leaver?.My local prim school in Dublin received 600 applicants for 2 teaching posts last summer!.

                • Irish Left Review · Job Crisis Within a Job Crisis? The Recession Diaries - February 10th ,

                  […] Bitech Engineering jobs in Louth,a seismic 750 job lost at Halifax, those depressing numbers that Ronan Lyons has pulled up – what are we to make of the state of the labour market only a few weeks into the new […]

                  • Cathal ,

                    While banks/NAMA and the public finances did grab more attention last year than the rise in unemployment, it’s not really and either/or for the government to pick which crisis to solve. These three crises are inter-related and need to be tackled together, otherwise they will become intractable. We can have all the jobs taskforces, employment subsidies and welfare-to-work schemes we want but they will count for little if the State has bankrupted itself and we have failed banks unable to extend credit to businesses to create those jobs which are needed. Balancing the budget and fixing the banks will go a long way towards improving the underlying employment environment. Active labour market policies will merely heighten this.

                    • We need to stop large amounts of youth falling into unemployment - Page 5 ,

                      […] know if you saw this from last week, not exactly uplifting stuff. More than half of all jobs for young men have disappeared Two thirds of young men not in education in places like Limerick and Donegal are in receipt of […]

                      • Unemployment Crisis ,

                        […] These astonishing figures add up to almost 100,000 job losses in a segment of the population that had only 175,000 employed at the peak of the boom. Over 55% of jobs for young men have disappeared. One occasionally hears the argument that, as bad as things are, an increase in unemployment of ten percentage points means that 90% of us are in more or less the same position now as during the boom. What these figures show is that while the rest of the economy has lost perhaps about 10% of its jobs, young men have lost more than half theirs More than half of all jobs for young men have disappeared | Ronan Lyons […]

                        • Foolish Penny ,

                          @ Kieran and @ Ronan – outside of CDS rates, are there any other indicators as to whether Ireland might default, or leave the Euro?

                          • joe ,

                            Too focused on construction and other dead-end jobs.

                            • Clare ,

                              Interesting article.

                              Did I read somewhere that you won an award? If so, big congrats to you. Enjoying your blog, Clare!

                              • Digest – Feb 14 2010 – The Story ,

                                […] Ronan Lyons with a great piece of analysis on men between 20 and 24 and unemployment; […]

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