The changing U.S. economy in four maps

The most common job in each state in 1978.

16389997587_0e9959bd23_zThe most common job in each state in 1988.

16574791922_bd081f6292_zThe most common job in each state in 2000.

16574792062_6c7be6e8d6_zThe most common job in each state in 2014

mostcommonjobSource: National Public Radio via Mike the Mad Biologist.

Long story short:  The most common jobs remaining are the ones that haven’t been automated and aren’t being done cheaper overseas.


[Added Later]  Chart of the most common jobs in each state.

123Source: NPR.

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5 Responses to “The changing U.S. economy in four maps”

  1. US economic changes - Says:

    […] Posted by admin The changing U.S. economy in three maps The most common job in each state in 1978. The most common job in each state in 1988. The most […]


  2. danallosso Says:

    Interesting map, and I think it does support your point about outsourcing. But I was a little leery about my state (MN) being dominated by truck drivers. Turns out that is an artifact of the census data, which lumps everybody in delivery businesses (probably sorters at the UPS hub, pizza deliverers, etc.) into one category while separating others (like primary and secondary teachers) into separate ones that result in their numbers seeming lower.


    • philebersole Says:

      You make a good point about the census data. I added a chart that shows the nature of the jobs more clearly.

      Based on what you say, it’s all the more interesting that primary school teacher is the most common job in six states.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Charles Broming Says:

    Another aspect of the jobs that remain is that they must be performed locally, i. e., depend on their locations. Now, consider the potential impact of driverless vehicles, online education and machine code created by computers…

    For example, what are the implications for changes in income and wealth distribution? Will there be a middle class – or, can there be a middle class? How would such an economy affect our tax code? How would it affect the length of the work week? How about demand for consumer products? If the work week becomes shorter, what would we do with all that leisure time? (this could be dangerous or destabilizing; you know what happen when most people have “too much time on their hands”)

    A provocative sequence of maps.


    • philebersole Says:

      The implications of automation so far have been more people out of work, the people with jobs working just as hard as before, and wealth and income increasingly concentrated in the hands of the owners of the high-tech machinery.

      There ought to be a better way to organize things.


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