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Abstract

The paper contributes to the understanding of the role of economic sectors in employment growth by examining the extent to which sectoral employment influence employment development in the rural southeast United States over the period 1970 through 2007. The analysis employs two specifications of OLS regression to understand the role of economic sectors in employment growth processes. The first specification (number of jobs) explained approximately 36 percent of the variability in employment growth while the second specification (number of enterprises) explained roughly 43 percent of the variability over the studied period. Overall, the results suggest that although the share and the social role of agriculture are shrinking in almost all rural areas, agriculture is still an important sector in rural employment growth.

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