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Activity Number: 118 - SPEED: Data Challenge
Type: Contributed
Date/Time: Monday, July 31, 2017 : 8:30 AM to 10:20 AM
Sponsor: Government Statistics Section
Abstract #324354 View Presentation
Title: Public Use vs. Restricted Use: a Case Study Using the American Community Survey
Author(s): Satkartar Kinney* and Alan Karr
Companies: RTI International and RTI International
Keywords: Disclosure ; Confidentiality ; Government ; Surveys

Statistical agencies frequently publish microdata that have been altered to protect confidentiality. Such data retain utility for many types of broad analyses but can yield biased or insufficiently precise results in others. Research access to de-identified versions of restricted-use data with little or no alteration are often possible, albeit costly and time-consuming. We investigate the advantages and disadvantages of using public-use and restricted-use data from the American Community Survey (ACS) in constructing a wage index from models predicting wages from age, gender, and other variables. The public-use data used were downloaded from the U.S. Census Bureau website while the restricted-use data were accessed via a Federal Statistical Research Data Center. We discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each data source and compare estimated CWIs and standard errors at the state and labor market levels. We find the results from the publicly available data are generally good relative to the restricted-use data, with greater similarity for larger areas and less similarity for smaller areas. Standard errors are higher in the public-used data but may still be underestimated.

Authors who are presenting talks have a * after their name.

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