Statistical Consulting with Developing Countries on Labor Force Surveys

Edwin L. Robison


Numerous challenges need to be met when consulting with developing countries that are implementing new sample surveys for measuring the labor force. The organizational infrastructure differs from that of developed countries, and the underlying economy is different. Ed Robison of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics participated in two series of consulting missions: the Labor Market Information System Project, Anglophone Caribbean and Suriname, sponsored by the Department of Labor and the International Labor Organization; and General Data Dissemination System, Phase 2, Socio-Demographic Statistics Project for Anglophone Africa (GDDS2), sponsored by the World Bank. Experiences are summarized on the difficulties of developing viable probability-based household survey samples, developing questionnaires, and properly weighting the collected data.