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Employment growth in knowledge occupations

Total employment in Canada grew 20% between 1998 and 2007, with the highest growth occurring in occupations that require higher levels of education, such as natural and applied sciences and related; health; social science, education, government service and religion; art, culture, recreation and sport. These occupations are usually referred to as knowledge occupations.

Women's employment grew 24% over the decade, compared with 16.8% for men. Their labour force also increased (21% compared with 14% for men).  But women's employment growth in knowledge occupations was even more impressive: led by an almost 51% increase in natural and applied sciences and related occupations, followed by art and culture (40.8%), and health and  social science, education, government service and religion (about 36%).

Employment growth by occupation for men and women, 1998 to 2007

Chart: Employment growth by occupation for men and women, 1998 to 2007

These occupational employment trends reflect women's predominant share of university degrees, which has outpaced men's since the early 1980s.

Women made less progress in management (their employment increased less than 7% compared with 13% for men), but surpassed men in business, finance and administrative occupations (22% compared with 16.5%).

Employment growth by occupation for men and women, 1998 to 2007

Table
Employment growth by occupation for men and women, 1998 to 2007

Related to this topic:

Knowledge workers in Canada's economy, 1971-2001, Statistics Canada, October 2003.

Dimensions of occupational changes in Canada's knowledge economy, 1971-1996, Statistics Canada, October 2003.

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