Friday, September 08, 2006

Colonial baggage put aside as Irish men manage Britain

Irish Examiner:

Our poorly-educated navvies helped build Britain, but now increasing numbers of Irish men are running the show there, a new survey shows.

However, 10% of Irish males living in Britain admit to doing nothing productive at all!

Researchers say they don’t know what the reason for this is though it could be because more Irish white men are mature students — while some are, no doubt, part of the black economy.

If it is more time spent in education, it could explain the improved fortunes of Irish men in entering the managerial and professional classes.

The survey, conducted by Dr Yaojun Li from Birmingham University and Prof Anthony Heath from Oxford University, shows Irish men have the competitive edge — as managers — over British males.

In the past decade Irish white men have overtaken British white men in gaining access to professional or managerial positions.

All of this shouldn’t come as a major surprise, given that we have well and truly shaken off our legendary inferiority shackles, blamed on 800 years of political domination by our nearest neighbour.

Talent, like cream, will always rise to the top.

A case in point is our high-flying compatriot Willie Walsh, who runs British Airways. !

With his feet firmly on the ground, the inimitable Matt Barrett rose to become chairman of that most British of institutions, Barclays Bank.

After all these high-flying sentiments, it’s sobering to reflect that, at the bottom of the ladder, the proportion of British and Irish men in unskilled and semi-skilled jobs or unemployed is the same.

Irish men top of tables in British workplaces


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