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Dispatch: 23 January 2017
Unemployment Crisis in Australia: Whic/Bell, Stephen /Paper/0521643945/S055-C1
Cambridge University Press
Since the 1970s the average level of unemployment in Australia has risen each decade. This has imposed huge economic, social and human costs, making unemployment one of the most pressing problems confronting Australia. Governments, however, seem powerless in the face of this problem.
Drawing on the expertise of some of Australia's leading economists, this book argues that the currently fashionable approaches of wage cuts and further steps toward labour-market flexibility will not solve the unemployment problem. In reality, unemployment and rising inequality are symptoms of the growing failure of contemporary labour markets to distribute jobs and incomes effectively. This book argues that the main solution to this problem is not wage cuts but jobs growth.
"Some of Australia's best minds have come together to address our most important national issue - the slow-burning crisis of unemployment. Compelling answers lie in the new geography of the Australian labour-market: spatially targeted investments in education, community services and the critical role of government as an employer of last resort. In particular, the contributors show how these measures can be pursued without harming Australia's current account deficit and inflation rate. Without policies of this kind, unemployment will remain unacceptably high and our society needlessly divided. This book deserves a wide readership among policy-makers and the general public." - Mark Latham, Labor Member for Werriwa.