What is ‘the labor market’?
Economists talk about the world of work as the ‘labor market’, or the supply of and demand for work by people in the economy. As soon as we start working, we ‘enter the labor market’, either as an individual offering skills or as an employer seeking them. The relative number of job seekers vs available work—the supply of labor and the demand for labor—determines how much people get paid for their work, or their wages.
What motivates us to work?
It seems like people do best when they have enough money to not have to think about money. When you can relax and do your job, you’ll usually work better than when you’re constantly worrying about incentives and bonuses and quotas and targets.
Modern slavery: Do some workers still not have a choice?
Slavery is often thought of as a thing of the past. Unfortunately, that’s not the case – The International Labor Organisation (ILO)—a United Nations organisation that looks at workers’ rights — estimates that 21 million people are currently forced to work through violence or intimidation across the world. That’s just a bit less than the whole population of Australia.