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Investigation into the rise in underemployment

One impact of the recession has been the increase in people taking on part time jobs or work that does not utilise all the skills they have. What is known as ‘underemployment’ is not well understood.

To find out the impact on those ‘underemployed’ and on Scotland’s economy, the Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee has launched an inquiry.

The Committee will focus its inquiry on the following four themes:

  • Understanding underemployment
  • The impact of underemployment
  • The role of the public sector, business and the third sector
  • The role of the Scottish Government

Convener of the Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee, Murdo Fraser MSP said:

“Unemployment figures are routinely used as a temperature check on our labour market. Recent unemployment statistics show a drop in those that are unemployed, but evidence suggests that these figures mask a more complicated picture, with underemployment on an upwards trend.

“Little is known about the impact of this trend on our economy and on those that are ‘underemployed.”

“The inquiry will also consider what actions business, the public and third sector and the Scottish Government can take on underemployment without having the unintended consequences of increasing unemployment levels”.