Burning Glass Institute

The Burning Glass Institute is situated at the intersection of learning and work. The fully independent nonprofit institute advances data-driven research and practice on the future of work and of workers, and works with educators, employers, and policymakers to develop solutions that build mobility, opportunity, and equity through skills.

Burning Glass Technologies was founded in 1999 with the goal of developing leading technologies for matching people with jobs. In June 2021, Burning Glass merged with Emsi to create a leading labor market analytics firm. The combined company was called Emsi Burning Glass with a mission to provide insights into the changing workforce for clients including corporations, government agencies, and higher education institutions. Subsequently, Emsi and Burning Glass became Lightcast, a global leader in labor market analytics.

In October 2022, Burning Glass issued The American Opportunity Index: A Corporate Scorecard of Worker Advancement, an effort to give companies and other stakeholders a set of tools to measure how well major employers are doing in fostering economic mobility for workers and how they could do better. The Index is a joint project of the Burning Glass Institute, Harvard Business School’s Project on Managing the Future of Work, and the Schultz Family Foundation. The Index assesses America’s 250 largest public companies based on real-world outcomes of their employees in roles open to non-college graduates—not merely their statements on corporate policy. It draws upon a new source of insight: big data analysis of career histories, job postings, and salary sources of more than 3 million workers at those firms.

Examples of recent research addressed by Burning Glass and partnering organizations:

  • Managing Up: Managing Education as a Ladder to Mobility - With the Sands Institute for Lifelong Learning at the University of Virginia Darden School of Business, reveals how upskilling and targeted managerial education can bridge the gap for over 10 million workers currently overlooked for first-time management roles due to traditional degree requirements.
  • Labor Market Outlook, April 2024 - Comprehensive analysis of current economic conditions and projections for the near future.
  • Skills for a Sustainable Future - Analyzes the increasingly overlap of green-digital skills and how these shifts will impact workers across the economy.
  • The Importance of Understanding Non-Degree Credential Quality - Overview of NDCs, their significance in the modern labor market, and pressing need for a framework to evaluate non-degree credential quality.
  • Reimagining the Public Library’s Role in Local Workforce Development - With Bendable Labs, reviews the role of public libraries in local workforce development.
  • Data Science Is for Everyone - With ExcelinEd, documents the rise in demand for data science skills, indicating the need for strong investment in data science skill attainment, and how important data skills are in a diverse array of jobs in the 21st century American workforce.

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