|From Wall Street Journal infographic (click to get better view) |
Blue line represents national U3 unemployment rate, tan line and bars are chemists
Thanks to Anon011320110519p for the link to the above Wall Street Journal infographic (click the image to get a better view). This shows the US Bureau of Labor Statistics' analysis of unemployment by occupation. The chart on the above left shows the unemployment rate for chemists and materials scientists. Interestingly, BLS indicates a drop from 4.5% for 2009 to 3.1% for 2010. I'm surprised to read that, really. If you had told me that BLS was going to tell me that the unemployment rate for chemists and materials scientists (heretofore referred to as Ch&MSc) was 3.1% for 2010, I'd have a difficult time believing that. The only thing I can figure is that some of the alternative energy push is bringing in new MatSci folks, perhaps.
The much more believeable number is the drop in total employed Ch&MSc dropped by 15k from 2007 to 2010; that doesn't surprise me a bit. Certainly, some of that is 'workforce participation' as older chemists move out of the lab (remember, BLS has a pretty strict definition of who is a chemist). Also, the ever-increasing number of materials scientists is hidden by combining their (much smaller) ranks with chemists.
Interesting find. Thanks again to Anon.