Senior economists at TD Bank have determined that the supposed shortage of STEM talent in Canada is “exaggerated,” according to Robert N. Charette at IEEE Spectrum. Increasingly, the standard narrative that numerous jobs are sitting unfilled owing to a lack of sufficient STEM candidates (not coincidentally providing ammo for supporters of H-1B and similar immigration programs) is coming under scrutiny. In this case, the authors of the TD report “debunk the notion that Canada is facing an imminent skills crisis or that the job market is headed for persistent economy-wide [labor] shortages over the long haul.”
In the U.S., proponents of the idea that a STEM shortage exists often toss out some (usually inadequate) ideas for reforming education, but looser immigration standards is usually the mantra. But the problem may not be so much a shortage of STEM candidates as a shortage of inexpensive, highly qualified STEM candidates—meaning simply that potential employers and employees don’t see eye to eye on the market price of expertise in these fields.
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