Economic globalization has led to intense debates about the competitiveness of nations. Prosperity, social justice, and welfare are now seen to depend on the creation of a 'high skilled' workforce. This international consensus around high skills has led recent American presidents to claimthemselves 'education presidents' and in Britain, Tony Blair has announced that 'talent is 21st-century wealth'. This view of knowledge-driven capitalism has led all the developed economies to increase numbers of highly-trained people in preparation for technical, professional, and managerial employment. But it also harbours the view that what we regard as a 'skilled' worker is being transformed. The pace oftechnological innovation, corporate restructuring, and the changing nature of work require a new configuration of skills described in the language of creativity, teamwork, employability, self-management, and lifelong learning.But is this optimistic account of a future of high-skilled work for all justified? This book draws on the findings of a major international comparative study of national routes to a 'high skills' economy in Britain, Germany, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, and the United States, and includes datafrom interviews with over 250 key stakeholders. It is the first book to offer a comparative examination of 'high skill' policies -- a topic of major public debate that is destined to become of even greater importance in all the developed economies in the early decades of the twenty-first century.