March 21, 2016: Employment Diversity in New Jersey's Counties

In this series of posts, we will be exploring how employment is distributed throughout New Jersey. In our exploration, we will be utilizing the Diversity Index to analyze the diversity of all jobs in the state by their industry sector. We will be using the Diversity Index in much the same way as in our previous posts, only here, rather than analyzing the diversity of a particular characteristic of individuals or households, the objects of our analysis will be jobs. Using jobs rather than individuals employed in jobs will help us to understand the diversity of the employment base within different areas of the state.

In our first post on this topic, we have used the most recent data (2014) from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics Program to analyze the diversity of industries within New Jersey’s counties. Accounting for the 20 mutually exclusive and non-overlapping major industry sectors acknowledged by the North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS), each county’s maximum Diversity Index would be 95.00. This scenario would be achieved if each major NAICS industrial sector accounted for 5% of the total jobs located in the county. In reality, Employment Diversity Index Scores of New Jersey counties range from 84.45 to 92.18. Atlantic County received the lowest Employment Diversity Index Score by a wide margin. The reason behind Atlantic County’s low score is the overwhelming concentration of Accommodation and Food Services industry jobs located in the county, which comprise nearly one-third of the jobs found here. Other counties with Diversity Index Scores under 90.00, such as Ocean, Cape May, and Warren counties, also feature high concentrations of jobs in this industry. The counties that score above 92.00 - Middlesex, Morris, and Somerset - feature less extreme concentrations of jobs in any one particular industry; however, they do have some of the highest proportions of jobs in the Professional, Scientific, and Professional Services industry.

Check in next week as we explore the diversity of jobs within New Jersey’s neighborhoods. Until then, use the interactive feature below to view the employment diversity of every county. Clicking on a county in the map will show the industry mix of jobs within that county in the chart below. Happy exploring. 


Author: John Manieri, AICP

Research, Analysis, and Technical Assistance: Steve Scott

Data Sources: 

U.S. Census Bureau. 2016. OnTheMap Application. Longitudinal-Employer Household Dynamics Program.