Geography of Labor Resources

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Geography of Labor Resources


the branch of population geography that studies the location of labor resources and regional differences in their composition and use.

The location of labor resources in different countries and regions differs from the location of the entire population; the percentage of able-bodied persons is usually not the same as in the total population because of differences in the age composition of the population. These differences depend on the birth and mortality rates and also on the results of population migration, in which the able-bodied part of the population usually participates more actively. Regions of pioneering development and new and fast-growing populated points typically have a larger percentage of able-bodied persons than areas with a regular outflow of population. There are also marked regional differences in the composition of the able-bodied population. The ratio of able-bodied persons in the young, middle-aged, and senior brackets differs, and within them the ratio of men to women differs. Analysis of these differences is an essential part of studying the location of production capacity.

Geography of labor resources studies labor resources in two aspects: differences in employment of the able-bodied population and distribution of employed persons by sectors of the national economy. A high degree of employment in public production is typical of the USSR, where there is no unemployment. Regional differences involve different ratios between the number employed in public production, on the private subsidiary plots of land, and in the home. The geography of labor resources also studies geographical differences in the annual amount of work of employed persons (especially in agriculture and subsidiary work) and the seasonality of different types of labor. In studying the geography of labor resources of the capitalist countries the geography of unemployment attracts special attention.

The distribution of labor resources by sectors of the national economy depends on the level of development and economic specialization of the countries and regions and on the functions performed by the various populated points. Regional differences in use of male and female labor are analyzed here. The study of labor resource geography is closely linked with the geography of national economic sectors and acquires great practical significance in the planned socialist society. The study of the geography of labor resources is particularly timely in the developing countries in connection with building national economies.


Ivanchenko, A. A. “Trudovye resursy ekonomicheskikh raionov SSSR i problemy ratsional’nogo ikh ispol’zovaniia.” In the collection Voprosy razmeshcheniia proizvodstva v SSSR. Moscow, 1965.
Degtiar’, L. S. Trudovye resursy i ikh ispol’zovanie v zarubezhnykh sotsialisticheskikh stranakhchlenakh SEV. Moscow, 1969.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
Full browser ?