by Jim Tomlinson
Scottish industrial employment fell from more than 40% in 1954 to less than 10% in 2014 (Figure 2.1).
However, Scottish GDP per head more than doubled in real terms between 1955 and 2013 (Figure 2.2).
In 2008/9 prices, UK public expenditure rose from £195 billion in 1970/71 to £565 billion in 2008/9.
Public spending per head in Scotland has exceeded that of the UK as a whole by a margin usually calculated between 15% and 20%.
In 2009 there were 788,000 in public sector employment and 604,000 in 1998 but these figures may be as much as 25% higher if we recognize publically funded employment too.
Between 1954 and 1974 there were no serious economic downturns, but in the following forty years there were four recessions.
For the full chapter, please see: Tomlinson, J. (2017) Key Historical Trends in the Scottish Economy. In Gibb, K., Maclennan, D., McNulty, K., & Comerford, M. (eds) Scottish Economy - A Living Book. London: Routledge. Available via this link.
Figure 2.1: Percentage of Labour Force in Industrial Employment
- Digest of Economic Statistics Vol. 3, 1955; Vol. 28, 1965; Scottish Economic Statistics Vol. 9, 2008; 2014
Figure 2.2: GDP Per Head (1995 Prices)
- GDP figures from Gibson et al. 1997. Figures for 2013 estimated from GVA data taken from here
Figure 2.3: Unemployment Rate
- All data comes from the Scottish Government's latest Labour Market Briefings
Figure 2.4: Public Sector Employment in Scotland
- Data comes from Census of Scotland (decennial); ONS databank and the Scottish Government's Labour Market page
Figure 2.5: Women's Employment
- All data comes from the ONS's Labour Market Statistics time series dataset