The literature review indicates that the scale and characteristics of demand for geography graduates on the labour market are largely unknown even though employment-related topics should constitute an important part of research in social and economic geography and, in particular, in labour geography investigations (Castree, 2007). Labour market researchers consider online job adverts to be a highly valuable source of data on real demand for employees. Online job adverts are a current, exhaustive, free of charge and non-reactive catalogue of occupational profiles needed by employers (e.g. Ledermüller, 2011; Kureková, Beblavý Thum-Thysen, 2015). Despite these advantages, adverts have been rarely used by geographers.
Therefore, the objective of the paper is to present results of research on real quantitative and structural demand for geography experts in six European countries, i.e. Austria, Germany, United Kingdom, Ireland, Poland and Switzerland. The analysis is based on a big data. i.e.: a total of 17 378 online job adverts with specific job titles that were collected over an 18-month monitoring period (Marinescu, Wolthoff, 2016).
To analyse such a vast body of text data various data mining techniques were used. They allow to recognize similarities and differences in the size and structure of demand in specific groups of countries. Employers from the UK and Ireland had the most comprehensive range of needs regarding candidates whereas the expectations of Polish employers were the least diverse. The content of job adverts was explored to allow for an in-depth understanding of the characteristics of employers’ expectations in specific occupational groups. Word frequency analysis of adverts with the same job title demonstrates which components of knowledge and skill capital can be considered universal on the European labour market and which are subject to substantial regional variations.
Keywords: big data|demand|graduate|job offer|text mining