Space Employment in Los Angeles: A Declining Role in the Aerospace Industry?

by Mary Holman, Ronald Konkel

Fall 1968

Volume 11
Issue 1

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Federal Procurement has been an important factor in the economic growth of Los Angeles, California, particularly southern California. Yet, because a large proportion of federal contracts go to firms in the aerospace industry, that industry has been more vulnerable than many others to shifts in federal procurement. The assumption of declining aerospace employment has frequently been built into economic forecasting models for the Los Angeles area, as well as for the entire nation. In anticipation of such a decline, the state of California even let contracts to firms in the aerospace industry to apply the systems analysis approach to other problems of public concern such as transportation, crime prevention, education, and pollution control. Although in the immediate period there has been no contraction in employment in the aerospace industry, discussion continues about the uncertain future of the industry. As is well known, recent increases in military purchases and in commercial demand for aircraft have resulted in a strong employment buildup in the aerospace industry.

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