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.

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