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Labor and Income

The labor market situation of recent years shows: High employment and low unemployment are possible with the right policies and in a flourishing economy.

About the topic

The German labor market has been in a state of flux in recent years: Due to structural change and digitization, jobs have been lost in some sectors, for example in mining or industry, but at the same time many new jobs have been created in the digital world of work. However, despite recent successes, millions of people are still looking for a job, although skilled workers are becoming scarce as a result of demographic change. Going forward, therefore, the goal remains to increase labor force participation, promote occupational mobility, make it easier for people to get into jobs, and keep the shortage of skilled workers at bay for the economy.

Meanwhile, the demands on employees are changing rapidly. Digitalization and internationalization are shaping the world of work. Aging and heterogeneous workforces pose difficult tasks for HR policy. Companies are well equipped if they succeed in balancing the different requirements.

Employees' earnings, i.e. wages and salaries, can be freely negotiated with their employers - in some cases, the leeway is limited by collective agreements. Wage policy also determines how many skilled workers employers can retain. Overall, wages have risen steadily over the past few years, which has led to an increase in prosperity.

German Economic Institute (IW) German Economic Institute (IW)

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Results of the IW Works Council Election Survey
Christian Kestermann / Hagen Lesch / Oliver Stettes IW-Trends No. 4 29. December 2022

Works Council Elections 2022: Results of the IW Works Council Election Survey

Works councils receive strong backing from the workforces they represent. Nevertheless, the drop in turnout reported in the IW Works Council Election Survey 2022 suggests that this support is declining.

IW

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Parental contributions for all-day care for primary school children
Wido Geis-Thöne IW-Report No. 62 25. November 2022

Parental contributions for all-day care for primary school children

The organisation of all-day care for primary school children varies greatly from region to region in Germany. In most of the eastern German states it takes place mainly in after-school care centres, which are part of the child and youth welfare services, ...

IW

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The Status Quo and Suggested Approaches for Policymakers
Wido Geis-Thöne IW-Trends 17. November 2022

Securing Skilled Labour by Attracting and Retaining International Students: The Status Quo and Suggested Approaches for Policymakers

The demographic transition is expected to leave Germany with a serious shortage of skilled workers. To alleviate this bottleneck, more young people from abroad should be trained at German universities and offered the prospect of long-term residence.

IW

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Renaissance of vocational training?
Roschan Monsef / Finn Arnd Wendland IW-Report No. 57 7. November 2022

Employees in the renewable energy sector: Renaissance of vocational training?

In order to master the ecological transformation of the real economy, many qualified specialists will be needed in the coming years.

IW

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Educational attainment of the population in a European comparison
IW-Report No. 3 21. January 2023

Educational attainment of the population in a European comparison

Wido Geis-Thöne

With the increasing shortage of skilled labour against the backdrop of demographic change and the changing demands on employees in the context of digitalisation, decarbonisation and de-globalisation, it is becoming increasingly important for Germany and Europe that the working population achieves the highest possible level of qualification.

IW

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Integration needs of children in regional comparison
IW-Report No. 1 15. January 2023

Integration needs of children in regional comparison

Wido Geis-Thöne

While the citizenship says little about the state of integration of adults, it is a good indicator of a recent migration history in the case of children.

IW

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Results of the IW Works Council Election Survey
IW-Trends No. 4 29. December 2022

Works Council Elections 2022: Results of the IW Works Council Election Survey

Christian Kestermann / Hagen Lesch / Oliver Stettes

Works councils receive strong backing from the workforces they represent. Nevertheless, the drop in turnout reported in the IW Works Council Election Survey 2022 suggests that this support is declining.

IW

Read study
Parental contributions for all-day care for primary school children
IW-Report No. 62 25. November 2022

Parental contributions for all-day care for primary school children

Wido Geis-Thöne

The organisation of all-day care for primary school children varies greatly from region to region in Germany. In most of the eastern German states it takes place mainly in after-school care centres, which are part of the child and youth welfare services, whereas in North Rhine-Westphalia these functions are taken over by the open all-day schools.

IW

Read study
The Status Quo and Suggested Approaches for Policymakers
IW-Trends 17. November 2022

Securing Skilled Labour by Attracting and Retaining International Students: The Status Quo and Suggested Approaches for Policymakers

Wido Geis-Thöne

The demographic transition is expected to leave Germany with a serious shortage of skilled workers. To alleviate this bottleneck, more young people from abroad should be trained at German universities and offered the prospect of long-term residence.

IW

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