Office of Survey Methods Research


J.L. Esposito and Sylvia Fisher(1998) "A Summary of Quality-Assessment Research Conducted on the 1996 Displaced-Worker/Job-Tenure/Occupational-Mobility Supplement," BLS Statistical Notes (No. 43), Bureau of Labor Statistics, Washington, DC.

This paper summarizes research undertaken as part of the Bureau's ongoing effort to improve the quality of its surveys. The DW/JT/OM supplement provides data on several issues that have been the focus of much research in recent years, including job loss due to structural change in the economy and the extent of employment instability. Three survey evaluation methods were used in conducting this research: behavior coding, interviewer debriefing using a focus-group format, and respondent debriefing using follow-up probe questions. As with any survey attempting to measure complex labor market phenomena, the quality of the information obtained from the DW/JT/OM supplement depends on clear definitions of the concepts to be measured and well-designed survey questions. The original goal of the quality assessment research was to examine the quality of the survey questions. What became apparent early in the evaluation process, however, was that there were many unresolved issues with the concepts being measured. To resolve these conceptual issues, a multiphase research plan is proposed for evaluating and possibly redesigning the DW/JT/OM supplement.

To receive a copy of this paper (usually within 3-5 days), please contact Jim Esposito by phone at 202-691-6368, by e-mail to, or by mailing your request to: James L. Esposito, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2 Massachusetts Avenue, N.E., Room 4985, Washington, DC, 20212.

Last Modified Date: July 19, 2008

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