'Working Scared' Author Predicts 5 More Years Of Pain

Carl E. Van Horn, Working Scared' author Since the recession, there has been fierce debate over the root causes of America's stubbornly high unemployment rate. Is outsourcing to blame? A skills mismatch? Is the American educational system failing? Is the epidemic of joblessness temporary, or a new and tragic fact of American life?

One group has been collecting the hard data to point to some answers. Over the last 15 years, the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University surveyed nearly 25,000 employed and unemployed Americans. The results offer the most comprehensive picture of the American workforce to date.

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Carl E. Van Horn, the founding director of the center and a professor of public policy, recently compiled all these findings into a book, Working Scared (Or Not At All). On Friday, Van Horn shared his groundbreaking work on AOL Jobs' "Lunchtime Live." He discussed how the job market has changed, and why, and offers advice to laid off workers, and the government too. (The professor gives the government a C+/B- so far.)

"Even Americans who have full-time jobs essentially live in fear of losing it tomorrow," Van Horn explains. "They're working scared because they're worried -- because they know that the idea of permanent jobs, job security, is a thing of the past. And they don't feel well-prepared if and when the ax falls on them, to make the transition."

Watch the highlights reel below, click here to watch the full interview on YouTube, and let us know in the comments, are you "working scared (or not at all)"?

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Filed under: Employment News

Claire Gordon

Staff Writer

Claire Gordon has contributed to Slate's DoubleX, the Huffington Post, and the book Prisons: Current Controversies. While an undergraduate at Yale University and a research fellow at Yale graduate school, she spoke on panels at Yale and Cornell, and reported from Cairo, Tokyo, and Berlin.

Follow Claire on Twitter. Email Claire at claire.gordon@teamaol.com. Add Claire to your Google+ circles.

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