The Center for Labor Market Studies is an applied research, evaluation, and policy-oriented technical assistance unit located within the Department of Economics of Northeastern University. It was initially established in 1979 to provide regional leadership for a three year grant that the Economics Department had received from the U.S. Department of Labor under the Institutional Grant Program. The IG program was designed by the national office of the U.S. Department of Labor to involve the nation’s universities and colleges more fully in the education, training, and professional development of staff in the human resources system at the regional, state, and local levels. In addition to these activities, CLMS began to conduct applied labor market research in Massachusetts, the New England region, and the entire country to train labor market analysts and human resource program planners on research, planning and evaluation techniques, and to assist in the development of improved labor market and occupational information systems and program evaluation systems at the regional, state, and local levels.
Applied labor market research and analysis, information systems development, employment and training policymaking, and human resource program planning and evaluation were the original agendas for CLMS. Over the past 25 years, the CLMS has broadened its mission to a considerable degree, undertaking studies on national and regional demographic developments including the aging of the population and the impacts of foreign immigration, the changing size and demographic composition of the disabled population, youth labor market developments, problems, and programs, the employment behavior and problems of older workers, the changing economic and social status of families, the literacy proficiencies of the U.S. population and labor force, cross-country analyses of literacy proficiencies and their influence on labor market outcomes, the college labor market in the U.S. and New England, engineering and scientific labor markets, and state and regional workforce development policy.
CLMS activities include conducting sponsored and other research on labor market developments, trends and problems and the outcomes and impacts of employment and training policies and programs. The Center produces a variety of research publications on the above topics, provides a wide array of technical assistance and training activities and is actively involved with national, regional, state, and local employment and training organizations and professional research associations, and disseminates research and evaluation findings to the national and local media.