Occupational Licensure and Regulation

Occupational Licensure and Regulation

Occupational licensure can be approached within a framework of basic economics. The people of every country produce and consume diverse commodities and services. This mixed bag—the economy’s output—is produced by combining the services of labor with other factors of production. These services of labor appear in varied forms; some involve more-and some less-energy, skill, intellect, and risk. The different tasks that are performed by those who render labor services and the different properties of those tasks are many and varied. People specialize in rendering labor services; each person who works performs a set of tasks that constitutes a very small portion of all the tasks done by all the people of the community. Since there is specialization of labor but less specialization in consumption, exchange occurs. Each person exchanges part of the product of his or her own specialized services for the products of others who also are specialized in the services they offer.

Simon Rottenberg

American Enterprise Institute

January 1980

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