The Case for Expanding Industrial Policy to Cover Service Jobs – Route Fifty

by | Sep 29, 2022 | Jobs

Industrial policy has long centered on areas like manufacturing, supply chains and the tech sector. But in a new proposal, one expert suggests broadening the focus to create more good jobs in health care, retail and other service industries.Parts of the U.S. labor market have not thrived over the last few decades, according to Dani Rodrik, a professor of international political economy at the Harvard Kennedy School of government. With many firms experiencing high employee turnover and workers dealing with low wages, waning productivity is at the heart of the difficulties, he said. When it comes to increasing good jobs and improving the workforce, elected officials often lean on social policy, such as investing in education. But in his new policy proposal, “An Industrial Policy for Good Jobs,” Rodrik suggests reshaping industrial policy to give local agencies the federal funds they need to provide firms with training, tax incentives, and technological or infrastructure assistance to enhance productivity.In return, those firms would be obligated to help their respective municipalities meet certain goals, such as creating a set number of good jobs by a specified date. “That quid pro quo, I think, is the essential kernel of a good industrial policy,” Rodri …

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