Jobs in the high-technology sector are a key to defeating the crisis, concludes a new study(1), presented on 29 January by the Bruegel think tank. It highlights the important role of the high-tech sector in creating jobs and of the high-tech workforce in generating income and economic growth.

The study - carried out by Catholic University of Leuven (Belgium) and Institut Vives, and financed by Google - concerns high-tech employment and salary trends in the EU27 from 2000 to 2011. The strength of the study lies in its use of a broad definition of high-tech employment, covering workers in the high-technology industry and the workforce with science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) skills in other sectors.

It shows that high-tech employment increased by 20% from 2000 to 2011, reaching 10% of total employment (or 22 million workers, 12 million of whom with STEM skills). Other employment rose by only 8%. The report also presents a country-specific analysis showing that all member states have experienced a progression in high-tech jobs and that, in 22 states, this type of employment has risen more than others during the same period. The Czech Republic registered the highest level of high-tech jobs, 13.7% (669,000) of total employment. Finland, Sweden, Denmark, France and eight other countries also registered a high level, with high-tech jobs accounting for at least 10% of employment. "Conversely, in the countries hit hardest by the crisis, like Greece and...

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