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A quick search on the term “skills gap” will show that a lot of people have varying opinions on the subject. This is because different people mean different things when they use the term — but one thing is certain: skills in our day and age are hard to measure and manage, because rapid rates of technological advancement demand new skills that schools aren’t teaching yet and which aren’t supplied by labor markets.

As an example, James Bessen, writing for the Harvard Business Review, uses graphic design to ‘illustrate’ his point:

“Until recently, almost all graphic designers designed for print. Then came the Internet and demand grew for web designers. Then came smartphones and demand grew for mobile designers. Designers had to keep up with new technologies and new standards that are still changing rapidly… graphic arts schools have had difficulty keeping up. Much of what they teach becomes obsolete quickly and most are still oriented to print design in any case. Instead, designers have to learn on the job, so experience matters… [as such] the labor market for web and mobile designers faces a kind of Catch-22: without certified standard skills, learning on the job matters but employers have a hard …

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