In this book fourteen large metropolitan economies are examined to show how industrial composition and jobs have changed in central cities and suburbs since 1970. Driven by the shift in emphasis from goods toward services, both central cities and suburbs have undergone dramatic changes. The analysis shows that many large central cities have experienced wrenching transformations as a result of low growth or declines in employment and population. However, these cities have continued to be the focal point of economic activity within the metropolis, becoming more narrowly specialized in high-level services, which have yielded higher average earnings. These cities are becoming increasingly dependent on commuting suburbanites for their experienced and educated labor force. In the suburbs, the cumulative effect of continuous growth since World War II has brought a different sort of transformation. The composition of employment has broadened, with sharp increases in commuting from areas outside the suburbs. Major new centers of business, consumer, and social services have developed, giving rise to agglomeration economies and posing new challenges to the social and economic structure of the central city. The book also examines employment opportunities in central cities and in suburbs with special emphasis on jobs for blacks, women, and young workers. Analysis reveals the increasing importance of educational qualifications and the role of part-time work and focuses on the problems central city blacks face in gaining employment. The prospects for city dwellers seeking suburban jobs are often limited by housing and transportation restrictions. The book closes with a critical review of suggested policy alternatives that might increase access to employment for these workers.
The Eisenhower Center for the Conservation of Human Resources Studies in the New Economy -- Foreword -- The Changing Metropolis -- The Industrial Composition of Employment -- Earnings Levels -- Agglomeration Economies and the Development of Cities and Suburbs -- Population and Work Force Characteristics -- Problems in City and Suburban Labor Markets