Bayes Hack 2016 |
Department of Labor Brief.

How can data be the difference between an economic shift and an economic win?

Changing demands in the economy require workers to learn, adapt, and retrain. Since the 1990s, the proportion of "middle-skill" jobs — sales, office, and administrative or factory workers — have systematically decreased in the United States.

New job opportunities exist; by 2017, an estimated 2.5 million new middle-skill jobs will be added to the workforce, accounting for 40% of all job growth.1 For workers to take advantage of that growth, they will have to learn new skills and adapt to the shifting geographies of the labor market.

In partnership with Bayes Impact, a team of data scientists at Airbnb is already hard at work examining the dynamics of huge-scale economic adaptation. What can federal and state policymakers do to bridge skill gaps? How can communities make the most of the coming growth?


  • The O*NET Resource Center gives detailed information about work and worker characteristics, including the skillsets most pertinent to the current middle-skill shift.
  • CareerOneStop hosts data on government workforce support programs primarily as a resource for workers; it's a useful dataset to evaluate the current state of support, to direct development of those support systems, and also to integrate into worker-facing applications.
  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics collects and publishes a lot of labor statistics. Surprise! Specifically, Labor Force Statistics from the Current Population Survey and Occupational Employment Statistics data might be of use.
  • O*NET OnLine is a public service for career planning, and they offer an API that allows developers to browse and classify their index of careers.
  • HIFLD geospatial data on the locations of various education providers, collected on the Esri ArcGIS data storytelling platform. An active workforce learning for a shift towards middle-skill labor will depend on access to professional education, but also on childcare support like day care centers.
  1. USA TODAY, in collaboration with Emsi in 2016.