Occupational Wages around the World (OWW) Database

Richard B. Freeman

Harvard University

National Bureau of Economic Research

London School of Economics

Remco H. Oostendorp

VU University Amsterdam

Tinbergen Institute

Amsterdam Institute for International Development

This database contains occupational wage data for 161 occupations in 171 countries from 1983 to 2008. The occupational wage data are derived from the ILO October Inquiry database (http://laborsta.ilo.org) by calibrating the data into a normalized wage rate for each occupation. The normalized wages refer to average hourly or monthly wage rates for adult workers.

DATA

OWW3 database

Stata
(self-extracting, original)

Stata
(uncompressed)

ASCII
comma-separated variables

ASCII
Tab-delimited

oww3.zip (4.1 Mb)

oww3.dta (19.4 Mb)

oww3.csv (47.9 Mb)

oww3.asc (47.9 Mb)

You will need a major database, statistical program, or programming language to use these files. This dataset is too large to load completely into MS Excel 2000, which has a maximum of 65,536 observations, though Access can be used to read the ASCII datafile. Users without STATA may be interested in STAT/TRANSFER. This program can translate STATA files into other formats including other statistical packages, database packages and spreadsheets. Among statistical packages supports are SPSS, SAS, and Systat.

Documentation

Technical documentation pdf doc

Variable List

The database contains the following variables:

OWW3

Variable Label

y0

year

y1

country code (from ILO October Inquiry)

country

country code (from World Development Indicators

y3

industry code (from ILO October Inquiry)

y4

occupation code (from ILO October Inquiry)

hw1

hourly: standard data LCU

hw2wu

hourly: country-specific calibration (uni) LCU

hw3wu

hourly: country-specific calibration with imputation (uni) LCU

hw4wu

hourly: uniform calibration (uni) LCU

hw2wl

hourly: country-specific calibration (lex) LCU

hw3wl

hourly: country-specific calibration with imputation (lex) LCU

hw4wl

hourly: uniform calibration (lex) LCU

hw1us

hourly: standard data US$

hw2wuus

hourly: country-specific calibration (uni) US$

hw3wuus

hourly: country-specific calibration with imputation (uni) US$

hw4wuus

hourly: uniform calibration (uni) US$

hw2wlus

hourly: country-specific calibration (lex) US$

hw3wlus

hourly: country-specific calibration with imputation (lex) US$

hw4wlus

hourly: uniform calibration (lex) US$

mw1

monthly: standard data LCU

mw2wu

monthly: country-specific calibration (uni) LCU

hw3wu

monthly: country-specific calibration with imputation (uni) LCU

mw4wu

monthly: uniform calibration (uni) LCU

mw2wl

monthly: country-specific calibration (lex) LCU

mw3wl

monthly: country-specific calibration with imputation (lex) LCU

mw4wl

monthly: uniform calibration (lex) LCU

mw1us

monthly: standard data US$

mw2wuus

monthly: country-specific calibration (uni) US$

mw3wuus

monthly: country-specific calibration with imputation (uni) US$

mw4wuus

monthly: uniform calibration (uni) US$

mw2wlus

monthly: country-specific calibration (lex) US$

mw3wlus

monthly: country-specific calibration with imputation (lex) US$

mw4wlus

monthly: uniform calibration (lex) US$

currency

currency as reported in ILO October Inquiry

exrt

exchange rate: LCU per US$

conv

conversion factor for wages in LCU

curr_conv

currency used for conversion factor


Calibration Info



Different calibration procedures have been used to normalize the data, and the suffix to the variable w (prefixed with 'h' or 'm' for hourly respectively monthly wage) indicates which calibration method has been used:

w1

wage reported in standard format in raw data

w2wu

wage with country-specific calibration, uniform weighting

w3wu

wage with country-specific calibration and imputation, uniform weighting

w4wu

wage with uniform calibration, uniform weighting

w2wl

wage with country-specific calibration, lexicographic weighting

w3wl

wage with country-specific calibration and imputation, lexicographic weighting

w4wl

wage with uniform calibration, lexicographic weighting


It is recommended to start any analysis conservatively with the non-calibrated data w1 and next to use the standardized data w2 and w3 (with increasing levels of data calibration / imputation). The standardized wage with country-specific calibration and imputation and lexicographic weighting (w3wl) is recommended for use because it provides the largest sample, it uses country-specific calibration to the extent possible and it uses lexicographic weights favoring raw data reported in standard format. The standardized data w4 do not use country-specific calibration and correspond to the standardization variant 2 in the initial release of the data for 1983-1998 (see NBER Working Paper #8058, table A.1). It is included for comparison.

QUESTIONS AND INFORMATION

If you have any questions about the OWW database please contact:
Remco Oostendorp
VU University
Amsterdam
De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
email:
r.oostendorp@ vu.nl

Last update: May 14, 2012