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The purpose of Areas of Interest (AOI) is to identify and highlight sub-county areas in the state that exhibit nontrivial growth or decline in employment. Typically, employment analysis focuses on industry and occupation, leading workforce developers to steer job seekers toward growing industries and occupations and away from declining ones. Expanding employment analysis to areas that are gaining or declining in employment gives workforce developers an additional dataset to consider when working with job seekers.

Similarly, economic developers can use AOIs to identify regions in the state experiencing employment growth to build upon such growth, or to identify regions in the state experiencing employment decline to implement intervention strategies.

Areas which experience at least five percent year-over-year employment growth accompanied by an employment gain of at least 25 are considered growing AOI. Similarly, the criteria for declining AOI are at least a five percent year-over-year employment decline accompanied by a decrease in employment of at least 25. When in addition, the area sustains four consecutive quarters of employment growth or decline, it is termed a Hi-Growth or Hi-Decline area.

Areas of Interest is generated from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) dataset. Non-economic coding changes in QCEW (e.g., recoding an employer’s place of employment) could lead to falsely identifying an area as an AOI when it isn’t, or not identifying it as one when in fact it is.

Pennsylvania's Areas of Interest is available in both PDF and Excel versions.

A map of Pennsylvania is available in a PNG image file.

Maps are also available by Workforce Development Area.

Workforce Development Areas

Berks (Berks) PDF
Bucks (Bucks) PDF
Central (Centre, Clinton, Columbia, Lycoming, Mifflin, Montour, Northumberland, Snyder, Union) PDF
Chester (Chester) PDF
Lackawanna (Lackawanna) PDF
Lancaster (Lancaster) PDF
Lehigh Valley (Lehigh, Northampton) PDF
Luzerne-Schuylkill (Luzerne, Schuylkill) PDF
Montgomery (Montgomery) PDF
North Central (Cameron, Clearfield, Elk, Jefferson, McKean, Potter) PDF
Northern Tier (Bradford, Sullivan, Susquehanna, Tioga, Wyoming) PDF
Northwest (Clarion, Crawford, Erie, Forest, Venango, Warren) PDF
Philadelphia Metro Division (Philadelphia, Delaware) PDF
Pocono (Carbon, Monroe, Pike, Wayne) PDF
South Central (Adams, Cumberland, Dauphin, Franklin, Juniata, Lebanon, Perry, York) PDF
Southern Alleghenies (Bedford, Blair, Cambria, Fulton, Huntingdon, Somerset) PDF
Southwest Corner (Beaver, Greene, Washington) PDF
Three Rivers (Allegheny) PDF
Tri-County (Armstrong, Butler, Indiana) PDF
West Central (Lawrence, Mercer) PDF
Westmoreland-Fayette (Fayette, Westmoreland) PDF

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