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Activity Number: 605 - Prospects for Combining Survey and Administrative Data for Income Measurement
Type: Invited
Date/Time: Thursday, August 2, 2018 : 8:30 AM to 10:20 AM
Sponsor: Business and Economic Statistics Section
Abstract #326903 Presentation
Title: Administrative Data Linkage and Microsimulation: Challenges and Opportunities
Author(s): Laura Lynn Wheaton*
Companies: The Urban Institute
Keywords: microsimulation; administrative data; eligibility; underreporting

Microsimulation models, such as the Transfer Income Model Version 3 (TRIM3), correct for underreporting of means tested benefits in survey data and enable simulations of alternative policy scenarios. TRIM3 identifies households eligible for a benefit by applying detailed program eligibility rules to each household in the survey data. Participants are selected from those eligible to produce a simulated caseload matching the size and characteristics of the actual caseload. Linked administrative and survey data provide an alternative approach to correcting for underreporting. In the linked data approach, survey responses are replaced with actual benefits obtained from administrative data. Linked data provide opportunities for improvements in microsimulation methodology, but also present challenges, particularly when a household's characteristics according to administrative data differ from those in the survey data. This paper describes the opportunities and challenges offered by linked datasets to microsimulation, considers how insights regarding these issues can inform analysis of linked datasets, and outlines areas for further research.

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

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