With a worker base of nearly 5 million people, and as home to dozens of mature and growing industry clusters, L.A. County is plentiful with skilled employees. A diverse economy made up of a broad range of industries from tourism to technology, food manufacturing to fashion, L.A. County has excelled in creating and attracting a diverse workforce with a wide range of skills – set to meet the demands of the world-class companies located throughout the county.


The over 120 colleges and universities in L.A. County fuel a skilled workforce, meeting the demands of today’s top industry sectors. Three world-class research universities – UCLA, USC, Caltech – graduate more engineers combined than anywhere else in the United States. The county has more PhD graduates than any other county in the United States. Partnership between organizations like the LAEDC and the county’s universities and colleges have led to the development of industry-specific curriculum, increasing job opportunities for the county’s college graduates.

Industry Employment

From an employment perspective, L.A. County is the nation’s #1 creative economy, the #1 international trade economy, and the #1 manufacturing economy. The creative economy defines much of L.A. County’s personality – freedom and innovation are part of the culture. The 2015 Otis Report reveals the strength of L.A. County creative arts and related industries, including entertainment, design, fashion, digital media, arts education, the working arts, illustration, game design and more. The Los Angeles regional creative industries sustained 744,100 workers, contributing to the L.A. region creative industry output of almost $177 billion.

L.A. County is leading development in emerging industries, and is providing the foundation for the next generation of knowledge workers. It is a center of development of cleantech and biomedical industries, employing the best and brightest in innovation sectors.  At 178,500 jobs, Los Angeles has more green jobs than any other region in the nation.  Approximately 38,000 people are at work producing pharmaceuticals, medical apparatus, medical equipment and supplies, and conducting research in the life sciences in L.A. County.

Learn more in our Key Industries section

Read about the High Tech workforce in LA — 368,000 workers strong! (NEW REPORT)

Workforce Development

The Workforce Development Committee of the LAEDC is fundamentally a think-tank of the county’s best minds from the education, business, and public sectors. With LAEDC’s Institute for Applied Economics delivering workforce intelligence and forecasts for specific occupations as a foundation for informed discussion, our region’s leaders collaborate to help align school curriculum and programs with the skills requirements of local businesses, with a focus on higher-skilled and better paying jobs.  This serves the dual goals of creating great career paths for graduating students, and helping the industries driving the region’s economy find enough qualified workers to meet their current and future needs.

In addition, the LAEDC works closely with Workforce Investment Boards, and launches policy initiatives in key growth industries such as advanced vehicles, as part of the focus on workforce development.