What are Opportunity Industries and How Are Good Jobs in the Inland Empire Related to Them?

By: Sharjeel Sohaib


Oct 27, 2021


“Opportunity Industries”—the industries that disproportionately contain the Inland Empire region’s “good jobs” and “promising jobs. “Good jobs” refer to those that provide middle-class wages and benefits. “Promising jobs” are entry level jobs that provide career pathways to good jobs“, according to report by Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings Institution.

Empire’s logistics and manufacturing industries

Logistics and manufacturing industries lead the way in offering and sustaining ‘good jobs’ in the Inland Empire. They also contain a disproportionate share of the region’s good jobs, especially for workers who do not have a bachelor’s degree.

The opportunity industries contain 18% of Inland Empire’s total jobs, but contain nearly 27% of its good jobs.

Brookings Institution

To understand big role both of these industries play in creating good jobs, or jobs that provide middle-class wages and benefits consider the following:

The Inland Empire’s well-established tradable industries, such as logistics, wholesale, and manufacturing, each provide above-average concentrations of good jobs. Together, these industries contain 18 percent of the region’s total jobs, but contain nearly 27 percent of its good jobs for sub-baccalaureate workers and nearly 18 percent of its promising jobs for these workers”.

Metropolitan Policy Program | Brookings
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Source: Advancing Opportunity in California’s Inland Empire: Metropolitan Policy Program | Brookings

From an Inland Empire Resident’s Perspective

The numbers worked out by the Metro Policy Program at Brookings gives a clue about upward mobility to residents of Inland Empire.

For example, ‘opportunity industries’ like logistics and manufacturing make up 18% of the workers in the Inland Empire but they make up 27% of the ‘good jobs’. Thus, if you are in the Inland Empire and want to not go below a ‘middle-class’ lifestyle and income level, your best bet is to stick around logistics and manufacturing industry.

This is why the Brookings reports lays emphasis on paying special attention to make these industries even better through R&D and providing them the resources needed to expand further.

“Firms in these industries may require new local resources that enable them to develop innovative new products and services, in addition to implementing more efficient processes that reduce costs and improve product and service delivery. Creating centralized expertise and technology can provide a shared resource that increases the capacities of these firms, the capabilities of their workers, and the quality of their jobs”. (Brookings Institution).

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Source: Advancing Opportunity in California’s Inland Empire: Metropolitan Policy Program | Brookings

We reported how Amazon is single-handedly investing more than any other private employer in the region. Take for example its new grocery store called Amazon Fresh in Murrieta.

This will help create jobs for other associated industries also. Similarly, to help tap the region’s potential in logistics and distrobution sectors, vertical-specific startup accelerators have launched in the market.

Fourth Sector Innovations, or 4th SI is a prime example where the accelerator accelerates logistics and distribution startups.


  • Avatar Of Sharjeel

    Sharjeel joined Startempire Wire as emerging technologies editor. Earlier, he worked at Silicon Canals, a leading English language technology media source for the Benelux and wider Europe. He covered the European technology and startup ecosystem digging into latest funding rounds of startups.


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