Government pledges on affordable homes makes public sector jobseekers' refuge

Recruitment firms Hays and Michael Page have identified social housing and civil engineering as two of the brightest prospects for employment in 2009, the Telegraph has reported.

Despite recent turmoil in the construction industry, jobs related to public sector construction have topped a list of the hottest sectors for jobseekers. For those employed in private sector work, however, the outlook remains grim.

Social housing is placed at the top of the list, on the back of the chancellor, Alistair Darling's announcement that an extra £775m will be spent over the next two years on affordable housing in the UK. It is hoped that this will provide some much-needed work for housebuilders.

Crossrail, the epic infrastructure project which plans to build a train line running through London, gets an honourable mention in second place. Work is set to begin on the project in 2010 but civil engineers may be able to snap up jobs on the £16bn in the planning stages.

The Scottish government's renewable energy strategy makes green energy specialists north of the border highly employable, and third on the list of likely employment areas. Twenty-four applications for wind farms are currently in the pipeline for Scotland, and well as nine hydro-electric projects and one wave project.