Luxembourg Income Study
The Luxembourg Income Study, asbl (LIS) is a non-profit project which produces a cross-national database of micro-economic income data for social science research. The project started in 1983 and is headquartered in Luxembourg. In 2006 the database included data from 30 countries on four continents, with some countries represented for over 30 years. Nationally representative household income survey data is commonly, though not exclusively, provided by the participant country's national statistics collection agency (e.g. Statistics Canada; the Australian Bureau of Statistics). These and other agencies subscribe and pay an annual fee which supports the project.
The LIS database contains anonymised demographic, income and expenditure information at three different levels of analysis (household, person and child). The data has, as far as is practical, been transformed to a structure which make different national data equivalent. Data access is only provided for research projects in the social sciences, commercial use is not permitted. For data security reasons the datasets cannot be downloaded or directly accessed. After being granted permission to use the data, users submit SPSS, SAS or Stata programs under their username and password to a remote server. The statistical results are automatically returned via email.
Datasets in the database are grouped in 5 year intervals. LIS wave 5 contains data collected in the 5 year period around the year 2000 (national datasets collected in a year between 1998 and 2002). From wave 5 onwards the database also contains data on labour market characteristics. The LIS data is only suitable for cross-sectional analysis as households cannot be linked over time.
Researchers must agree to publish their papers in the LIS working paper series. This does not preclude other forms of publication. In 2006 there were over 400 research papers in the series. The data is particularly suitable for cross-national comparisons of poverty and inequality and there are many papers on these topics in the working paper series.
LIS is attempting to enroll more middle-income countries as the database has traditionally enrolled high income countries. From 2007 a new cross-national database on wealth, named 'LWS', will become available. It contains data from a subset of the countries participating in the LIS.
The LIS website contains data access application forms, dataset contents, abstracts from the LIS working paper series, worked examples and self-teaching tutorials.
Countries/Regions Participating in the LIS (2013)
Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Hungary, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Peru, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay
- Luxembourg Income Study Official site (URL accessed 12-Jul-2013)