Skills Gap – A Strategy for Increasing Knowledge Worker Supply & Demand


  • J Gregg Whittaker William Jewell College



Skills Gap, Knowledge Worker, Economic Wedge, Inefficient Equilibrium, Job-Ready Professionals.


The U.S. Economy has been and continues to be burdened with a “Skills Gap†where the skills of the available workforce are mismatched with the skilled talent needs of employer. The skills gap is especially evident among knowledge workers.  Millions of people in the US are looking for jobs while millions of skilled jobs remain open. The unemployed and the underemployed in general do not posess the professional skills necessary for the jobs that are available. The conundrum is this recognized shortage of skilled knowledge workers has not led to the expected increase in salaries traditional economic analysis would suggest. This paper explains the true economic analysis of the skills gap in terms of an economic “wedge†that supresses knowledge worker saleries in the face of worker shortages. The paper recognizes a systemic disharmony between the momentum of traditional higher education and the rapidly changing needs and demands for professional skill sets in the marketplace. Traditional academic institutions are not predisposed to creating job-ready professionals that meet market needs, and private sector businesses are not positioned to fill the professional education, training and development gaps that exist. Significant opportunities exist to reposition the players to cerate opportunities for both academic intuitions and private sector companies to address the skills gap problem efficiently and effectively.

Author Biography

J Gregg Whittaker, William Jewell College

Professor, Department of Business and Leadership


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