Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung

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Inhaltsbereich: Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung

Panel Study Labour Market and Social Security (PASS)


Research Department E3

Research task

This Research Department is responsible for planning and implementing the Panel Study Labour Market and Social Security (PASS) which has been supplying data for research on basic income support in annual survey waves since 2007.

The data from PASS form the basis for answering a multitude of questions relating to research on the labour market and poverty as well as for the evaluation of social policy measures. The data shall enable researchers  to perform detailed descriptions and analyses of the living conditions of benefits recipients and other households in the low income bracket. In addition to this, the data allow the  analysis of the determinants of entry into and exit from benefit receipt as well as the evaluation of active labour market programmes applied in accordance with the SGB II (Social Code, Book II).

The study comprises two subsamples. For the first subsample, needy households were selected from the administrative data of the Federal Employment Agency. This subsample is replenished each year with a sample of the new entries to basic income support. The second subsample is a random sample of the general population. This ensures that those receiving basic income support can be compared to reference groups and that the findings of the study can be generalised for the population of Germany as a whole. Details of methodological particularities can be found in the detailed description of the study.

The department's research efforts concentrate on three central topics:

1. The duration and dynamics of receiving benefits and/or poverty
The use of panel data allows the analysis of the dynamic elements of poverty and receiving benefits. The central topics in this context are the length of time these states last, as well as determinants of entries and exits.

2. Living conditions of households
The analysis of the material situation of households should rest upon a broad conceptual basis and should therefore take various different theoretical approaches into account. The material situation of households is not only assessed via income and wealth (resource approach), but also via a direct measurement of poverty according to the deprivation approach. Moreover, in order to properly take into account the complex character of poverty, further dimensions of the living circumstances are also taken into account, such as social inclusion, health or residential conditions.

3. Survey methodological research
As part of its survey methodological research, the Research Department examines various error sources in the panel data. In particular, randomized field experiments and the linkage of survey data to the administrative data of the Federal Employment Agency are the basis for this research. The findings of this survey methodological research then flow into the further development of the survey.


Projects of department

Staff members