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The Declining Volume of Workers’ Training in Britain

Author

Listed:
  • Francis Green
  • Alan Felstead
  • Duncan Gallie
  • Hande Inanc
  • Nick Jewson

Abstract

The conventional focus on the training participation rate, rather than training volume, in official statistics and research has obscured a radical transformation in workers’ training in Britain. To obtain a picture of the trend in training volume, we synthesize a narrative through a new analysis of multiple surveys. The duration of training fell sharply with the result that the training volume per worker declined by about a half between 1997 and 2012. This fall is hard to reconcile with optimistic rhetoric surrounding the knowledge economy. Potential explanations are discussed. We conclude with recommendations to improve the collection of training statistics.

Suggested Citation

  • Francis Green & Alan Felstead & Duncan Gallie & Hande Inanc & Nick Jewson, 2016. "The Declining Volume of Workers’ Training in Britain," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 54(2), pages 422-448, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:brjirl:v:54:y:2016:i:2:p:422-448
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/bjir.12130
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Daron Acemoglu & Jörn-Steffen Pischke, 1998. "Why Do Firms Train? Theory and Evidence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(1), pages 79-119.
    2. Francis Green & Luisa Zanchi, 1997. "Trends in the Training of Male and Female Workers in the United Kingdom," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 35(4), pages 635-644, December.
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    5. Stevens, Margaret, 1994. "A Theoretical Model of On-the-Job Training with Imperfect Competition," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 46(4), pages 537-562, October.
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    7. Alan Felstead & Francis Green & Nick Jewson, 2012. "An analysis of the impact of the 2008–9 recession on the provision of training in the UK," Work, Employment & Society, British Sociological Association, vol. 26(6), pages 968-986, December.
    8. Ewart Keep & Ken Mayhew, 2010. "Moving beyond skills as a social and economic panacea," Work, Employment & Society, British Sociological Association, vol. 24(3), pages 565-577, September.
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