- Questionnaire Text
- UnHarmonized Variables
Codes and Frequencies
OCC1950 recodes information contained in the variable OCC into the 1950 Census Bureau occupational classification system. Developed to enhance the comparability of occupational data in historical U.S. census samples in IPUMS-USA, OCC1950 also provides a consistent set of occupational codes for IPUMS-CPS from 1968 forward.
In 1992-2002, CPS documentation indicates that the original code 16 is not used. However, 16 does appear as a value in the data for occupation in these years. According to the Census Bureau, 16 is the code for Postmasters under the 1990 occupation coding scheme. These records are given a harmonized value of 270=Postmasters in OCC1950.
For general discussion of the OCC1950 variable, users should consult the IPUMS-USA documentation. For discussion of the CPS data on occupations that are recoded into OCC1950, see the OCC variable.
While the universe for this variable shifted, OCC1950 used a consistent coding scheme from 1968 on. Researchers should keep in mind, however, that the translation of occupation codes into the 1950 classification is more problematic for the 1980, 1990, and 2000 census classification systems, which went into effect beginning with the 1983 CPS data. For further discussion of this issue, consult the IPUMS-USA documentation.
Comparability with IPUMS-USA
The occupational codes of OCC1950 are identical for IPUMS-CPS and IPUMS-USA. This shared classification system does not, however, overcome differences in the universes on occupational data in the two sources. Beginning in 1988, the census used age 16 as the lowest age cut-off for employment questions, while earlier enumerations used age 14 as the cut-off. In the CPS, data for OCC1950 was collected for persons age 14+ prior to 1988 and age 15+ thereafter. Because the CPS is designed to measure the labor force experience of civilians, members of the armed forces were not asked this question in the Current Population Survey. Persons in the military are included in the census and ACS data on OCC1950.
- 1968-1988: Civilians age 14+ who: were currently employed; or had previously worked and were looking for work; or were not currently in the labor force but had worked in the preceding 5 years.
- 1989+: Civilians age 15+ who: were currently employed; or had previously worked and were looking for work; or were not currently in the labor force but had worked in the preceding 5 years.
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