This analysis compares the functional skill requirements of manufacturing employment in rural and urban areas of six Southern states. The General Educational Development-Reasoning Scale provides information on the cognitive requirements of various work tasks while Specific Vocational Preparation provides information on the time of training needed for average performance in a job. The analysis identifies three distinct patterns of comparative skill requirements. Traditional Rural Production is characterized by substantial low-skill employment in both rural and urban areas-the modest number of high-skilled workers are found predominantly in urban areas. Spatial Division of Labor Production is characterized by a large share of middle-skill jobs in both rural and urban areas but with high-skill employment found predominantly in urban areas. Spatially Integrated Production has the highest share of highly-skilled employees and is characterized by relatively similar skill requirements in rural and urban environments.
Wojan, Timothy. 1999. "Functional Skill Requirements of Manufacturing Employment in the Rural South." Journal of Rural Social Sciences, 15(1): Article 6. Available at: https://egrove.olemiss.edu/jrss/vol15/iss1/6