Survey Non-response and Unemployment Duration

Research output: Working paperProfessional

Abstract

Social surveys are often used to estimate unemployment duration distributions. Survey non-response may then cause a bias. We study this using a unique dataset thatcombines survey information of individual workers with administrative records ofthe same workers. The latter provide information on unemployment durations andpersonal characteristics of all survey respondents and non-respondents. We developa method to empirically distinguish between two explanations for a bias in resultsbased on only survey data: (1) selectivity due to related unobserved determinantsof unemployment durations and non-response, and (2) a causal effect of a job exiton non-response. The latter may occur even in fully homogeneous populations. Themethodology exploits variation in the timing of the duration outcome relative tothe survey moment. The results show evidence for both explanations. We discussimplications for standard methods to deal with non-response bias.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
PublisherTinbergen Instituut
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Publication series

NameDiscussion paper TI
No.04-094/3

Fingerprint

Survey nonresponse
Unemployment duration
Workers
Non-response
Survey data
Selectivity
Nonresponse bias
Causal effect

Cite this

van den Berg, G. J., Lindeboom, M., & Dolton, P. J. (2004). Survey Non-response and Unemployment Duration. (Discussion paper TI; No. 04-094/3). Amsterdam: Tinbergen Instituut.
van den Berg, G.J. ; Lindeboom, Maarten ; Dolton, Peter J. / Survey Non-response and Unemployment Duration. Amsterdam : Tinbergen Instituut, 2004. (Discussion paper TI; 04-094/3).
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van den Berg, GJ, Lindeboom, M & Dolton, PJ 2004 'Survey Non-response and Unemployment Duration' Discussion paper TI, no. 04-094/3, Tinbergen Instituut, Amsterdam.

Survey Non-response and Unemployment Duration. / van den Berg, G.J.; Lindeboom, Maarten; Dolton, Peter J.

Amsterdam : Tinbergen Instituut, 2004. (Discussion paper TI; No. 04-094/3).

Research output: Working paperProfessional

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T1 - Survey Non-response and Unemployment Duration

AU - van den Berg, G.J.

AU - Lindeboom, Maarten

AU - Dolton, Peter J.

PY - 2004

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N2 - Social surveys are often used to estimate unemployment duration distributions. Survey non-response may then cause a bias. We study this using a unique dataset thatcombines survey information of individual workers with administrative records ofthe same workers. The latter provide information on unemployment durations andpersonal characteristics of all survey respondents and non-respondents. We developa method to empirically distinguish between two explanations for a bias in resultsbased on only survey data: (1) selectivity due to related unobserved determinantsof unemployment durations and non-response, and (2) a causal effect of a job exiton non-response. The latter may occur even in fully homogeneous populations. Themethodology exploits variation in the timing of the duration outcome relative tothe survey moment. The results show evidence for both explanations. We discussimplications for standard methods to deal with non-response bias.

AB - Social surveys are often used to estimate unemployment duration distributions. Survey non-response may then cause a bias. We study this using a unique dataset thatcombines survey information of individual workers with administrative records ofthe same workers. The latter provide information on unemployment durations andpersonal characteristics of all survey respondents and non-respondents. We developa method to empirically distinguish between two explanations for a bias in resultsbased on only survey data: (1) selectivity due to related unobserved determinantsof unemployment durations and non-response, and (2) a causal effect of a job exiton non-response. The latter may occur even in fully homogeneous populations. Themethodology exploits variation in the timing of the duration outcome relative tothe survey moment. The results show evidence for both explanations. We discussimplications for standard methods to deal with non-response bias.

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van den Berg GJ, Lindeboom M, Dolton PJ. Survey Non-response and Unemployment Duration. Amsterdam: Tinbergen Instituut. 2004. (Discussion paper TI; 04-094/3).