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Ottawa eliminates longitudinal labour force survey


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Statistics Canada announced that they will no longer be gathering data for the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics (SLID). While other surveys on labour are still available, they are cross-sectional. These types of surveys only offer a snapshot of any particular point in time. Longitudinal surveys like the SLID tracks changes over time, giving researchers and policy analysts the ability to observe and discover patterns over time and the effects of a variety of changes in variables on people over time. When researchers are only able to look at cross-sectional data, they may only speak to co-variability. They will be unable to comment on directionality when it comes to changes between variables.

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Or, it was a waste of money.....

Statistics Canada announced that they will no longer be gathering data for the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics (SLID). While other surveys on labour are still available, they are cross-sectional. These types of surveys only offer a snapshot of any particular point in time. Longitudinal surveys like the SLID tracks changes over time, giving researchers and policy analysts the ability to observe and discover patterns over time and the effects of a variety of changes in variables on people over time. When researchers are only able to look at cross-sectional data, they may only speak to co-variability. They will be unable to comment on directionality when it comes to changes between variables.

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Longitudinal surveys like the SLID tracks changes over time, giving researchers and policy analysts the ability to observe and discover patterns over time and the effects of a variety of changes in variables on people over time. When researchers are only able to look at cross-sectional data, they may only speak to co-variability. They will be unable to comment on directionality when it comes to changes between variables.

which is a point for having these types of studies championed by institutions outside a Statistics Canada government agency; ones not subject to political whim and short election/budgetary cycles. Typically, similar style surveys across other nations are maintained and funded by academia. The same way Harper Conservatives so easily dispatched with Statistics Canada's long-form census, under a premise of 'cost savings', Harper Conservatives also so easily dispatch with the SLID and it's long-standing wealth of (trending) data. Supposedly... Harper Conservatives are suggesting the LISA survey will be tailored to align closer to what SLID provided - notwithstanding the loss of the SLID's long-standing data/processing/reports/continuity... you know, the fundamental nature of longitudinal analysis!

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Statistics Canada announced that they will no longer be gathering data for the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics (SLID). While other surveys on labour are still available, they are cross-sectional. These types of surveys only offer a snapshot of any particular point in time. Longitudinal surveys like the SLID tracks changes over time, giving researchers and policy analysts the ability to observe and discover patterns over time and the effects of a variety of changes in variables on people over time. When researchers are only able to look at cross-sectional data, they may only speak to co-variability. They will be unable to comment on directionality when it comes to changes between variables.

So what is it that Harper doesn't want us to know about long term labour trends?

Something about the increasing reliance of some industries on imported underpaid temporary workers perhaps?

Or the long term failure of women and minorities to break glass ceilings?

Other thoughts?

It's pretty obvious that Harper doesn't want us to ne able to look at the impact of his government on Canadians over time.

Has he managed to get rid of that pesky requirement for democratic elections yet? <_<

Edited by jacee
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which is a point for having these types of studies championed by institutions outside a Statistics Canada government agency; ones not subject to political whim and short election/budgetary cycles. Typically, similar style surveys across other nations are maintained and funded by academia. The same way Harper Conservatives so easily dispatched with Statistics Canada's long-form census, under a premise of 'cost savings', Harper Conservatives also so easily dispatch with the SLID and it's long-standing wealth of (trending) data. Supposedly... Harper Conservatives are suggesting the LISA survey will be tailored to align closer to what SLID provided - notwithstanding the loss of the SLID's long-standing data/processing/reports/continuity... you know, the fundamental nature of longitudinal analysis!

The thing with these types of surveys being floated by academia is that it would typically be supported by SSHRC. Although they're arm's length from the government, they're still a government agency.

The Harper government has been systematically dispatching with inconvenient truths since they took office in 2006. They've defunded any groups that may disagree with their policies. No former governments have defunded the third-sector to the degree that Harper has and in such a partisan way. Moreover, he eliminated the mandatory long-form census, which also contains necessary information on the most vulnerable individuals in the country. SLID does the same thing. It seems that he has chosen to ignore the most vulnerable in society because the facts that come out of these third-sector organizations and surveys are inconvenient to their ideological policies. This is just bad governance.

Canada is in trouble because political parties, both the Liberals and Conservatives, probably the NDP too when they have the chance to govern, are more interested in winning than actually solving the problems faced by people in our country. You can't say the majority of people are doing fine, so we can ignore all the rest that are suffering. The measure of a good government, in my opinion, is how well it can balance the interests of everyone in society. This government is an utter failure on that ground.

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So what is it that Harper doesn't want us to know about long term labour trends?

Something about the increasing reliance of some industries on imported underpaid temporary workers perhaps?

Or the long term failure of women and minorities to break glass ceilings?

Other thoughts?

It's pretty obvious that Harper doesn't want us to ne able to look at the impact of his government on Canadians over time.

Has he managed to get rid of that pesky requirement for democratic elections yet? <_<

Seems to be the logical next step after allowing immigrants to be paid 15% less and making those sweeping changes to EI that requires people to take any job offered, regardless of pay or field. The last thing Harper wants is record of how that has affected people over time, especially since the EI portion is a longitudinal plan. Your benefits change the more times you go on EI. It's blind governance. This government has shown time and again that they don't want to see the numbers. They just want to govern according to ideology, outcome be damned.

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Seems to be the logical next step after allowing immigrants to be paid 15% less and making those sweeping changes to EI that requires people to take any job offered, regardless of pay or field. The last thing Harper wants is record of how that has affected people over time, especially since the EI portion is a longitudinal plan. Your benefits change the more times you go on EI. It's blind governance. This government has shown time and again that they don't want to see the numbers. They just want to govern according to ideology, outcome be damned.

at least you could maintain intellectual honesty when you accuse the Cons of egregious conduct. The EI changes do not operate as you claim and are, in my view, still open to abuse by many.

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at least you could maintain intellectual honesty when you accuse the Cons of egregious conduct. The EI changes do not operate as you claim and are, in my view, still open to abuse by many.

This. I just can't believe how blatantly the Cons wanted to screw over the Atlantic provinces.

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The Harper government has been systematically dispatching with inconvenient truths since they took office in 2006. They've defunded any groups that may disagree with their policies. No former governments have defunded the third-sector to the degree that Harper has and in such a partisan way. Moreover, he eliminated the mandatory long-form census, which also contains necessary information on the most vulnerable individuals in the country. SLID does the same thing. It seems that he has chosen to ignore the most vulnerable in society because the facts that come out of these third-sector organizations and surveys are inconvenient to their ideological policies. This is just bad governance.

and these are the dispatches we know about... that we hear about. All under the false guise of Harper Conservative fiscal acumen, accountability and transparency.

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Longitudinal surveys like the SLID tracks changes over time, giving researchers and policy analysts the ability to observe and discover patterns over time and the effects of a variety of changes in variables on people over time. When researchers are only able to look at cross-sectional data, they may only speak to co-variability. They will be unable to comment on directionality when it comes to changes between variables.
Whether time-series, cross-sectional or longitudinal, the danger is to believe that these surveys - because they come from a State agency - are accurate. Increasingly, they are not.

Information, like gossip, is the lifeblood of any society. It is naive to believe that information, like gossip, is always accurate.

Smart business people (and smart people in general) have ways to acquire accurate information, or to assess whether gossip is connected to reality.

----

I think Harper is taking a long term (and correct) view of this government statistical collection. The State has enough on its hands trying to collect enough information to assess taxes properly.

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Whether time-series, cross-sectional or longitudinal, the danger is to believe that these surveys - because they come from a State agency - are accurate. Increasingly, they are not.

Information, like gossip, is the lifeblood of any society. It is naive to believe that information, like gossip, is always accurate.

Smart business people (and smart people in general) have ways to acquire accurate information, or to assess whether gossip is connected to reality.

----

I think Harper is taking a long term (and correct) view of this government statistical collection. The State has enough on its hands trying to collect enough information to assess taxes properly.

Good grief...

All that verbosity to tell us that business knows best and it's all about the "personal freedom"...

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business and The Fraser Institute thanks you for your undying support...

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Whether time-series, cross-sectional or longitudinal, the danger is to believe that these surveys - because they come from a State agency - are accurate. Increasingly, they are not.

Do you have any evidence to support your claims that these surveys are increasingly less accurate than they were before?
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All that verbosity to tell us that business knows best and it's all about the "personal freedom"...

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business and The Fraser Institute thanks you for your undying support...

I may have been verbose but that was not my argument at all. How people use information to form expectations is at the heart of the main debate in macroeconomic theory over the past 40 years or so.
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Do you have any evidence to support your claims that these surveys are increasingly less accurate than they were before?
If statisticians in Britain get their way, for instance, the census planned for next year could be the country’s last. Instead, they are considering gathering information from the vast, centralised databases held by government, such as tax records, benefit databases, electoral lists and school rolls, as well as periodic polling of a sample of the population. It is a global trend, pioneered, inevitably, in Scandinavia. Denmark has been keeping track of its citizens without a traditional census for decades; Sweden, Norway, Finland and Slovenia, among others, have similar systems. Germany will adopt the approach for its next count, also due in 2011.

There are two reasons for the change. The first is that computerisation allows statisticians to interrogate databases in a way that was not possible when information was stored on cards in filing cabinets. The second is that counting people the traditional way is getting harder, and less useful.

The Economist
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