A map of regional employment based on the 2006 population census
The new population census makes it possible to map the employment characteristics of France's 26 regions. The Paris Region (Île-de-France) at one end, and Corsica and the four overseas départements (DOMs) at the other, stand apart from the other regions. The main reason is the skill level of their jobs, which is very high in the Paris region and low, on average, in the second group. The gaps are narrower in the regions of metropolitan France (mainland + Corsica) other than the Paris Region. We can, however, divide these regions into three distinct groups: (1) a “tertiary-sector” zone in the south-east (Midi-Pyrénées, Languedoc-Roussillon, Provence - Alpes - Côte-d'Azur, and Rhône-Alpes) where employment tends to be skilled, with a significant proportion of female workers and hence a larger share of part-time jobs than elsewhere; (2) a zone of traditional industries in the north and east (Nord - Pas-de-Calais, Lorraine, and Alsace), where the working population comprises a high proportion of paid employees, who are fairly young but not very highly educated; (3) a more agricultural zone in the west and south-west (Basse-Normandie, Bretagne, Poitou-Charentes, Aquitaine, Limousin, and Auvergne) with a workforce that is less young and less skilled than elsewhere. The seven other regions-roughly the ones surrounding the Paris Region-form a fourth zone with less well-defined characteristics.