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Datawarehouse labour market (1) - Labour accounts (2)

Research project AG/DD/001 (Research action AG)

Persons :

Description :

1. Datawarehouse labour market

The public institutions benefiting from the support measure are the following :

- Crossroads Bank for Social Security
- National Office for Unemployment
- National Sickness and Invalidity Insurance Institute
- National Office for Social Security
- National Office for Social Security of Local and Provincial Authorities
- National Office for family benefits for salaried persons
- National Institute of Social Insurance of the Self-employed

These different institutions become partners of the project 'Datawarehouse Labour Market'.

The different partner-institutions in this project are frequently asked by external users (such as research centres and universities) to supply taylor-made statistical series on individuals and their labour market positions which are built upon their administrative records. Because their mainframes are not designed for such demands, building up statistical series is often a very time and money consuming procedure.

The project thus consists in creating within the Crossroads Bank for social Security a system where data stemming from the different participating social security offices will be downloaded in an anonymous and harmonised form. Thereby, the Crossroads bank will benefit from a more flexible system that enables the constitution of statistical series corresponding to the user's needs in a much simpler and more cost efficient way.

The final product of the project is thus a system combining personal, but anonymous data from the various social security offices. The Crossroads Bank has worked in close collaboration with the Smals-Mvm (the firm responsible for the computer and technical aspects of linking the data).

Two types of applications are put into place. Firstly, the ad hoc user’s demands of data. These still need to follow the standard procedure, i.e. must be approved by the Surveillance Committee of the Bank. Secondly, the datawarehouse will generate standard application, after approval of this same committee.

The Crossroads Bank continued the following up of the project after the financing by the OSTC. The datawarehouse is now in a continuous phase of development as the standard applications are being created. The Bank has put up two committees to help her in her efforts. The first is a user’s committee composed of the social security offices participating in the Agora project, the research teams, a panel of scientists interested in using the data. This Committee is steered by one of the promotor of the Agora project, namely the Steunpunt Werkgelegenheid Arbeid en Vorming of the KU Leuven. The scientific aspects of the datawarehouse are discussed in this committee and proposals for amelioration are being made. The second committee is the steering organ of the project and treats the scientific requirements from the first committee as well as the technical aspects of the datawarehouse. The day to day management of the datawarehouse is under the responsibility of the Crossroads Bank.

2. Labour accounts

This project supports the following public institution :

Federal Ministry of Employment and Labour.

It seems more and more that the concepts, variables and statistical sources concerning the labour market tend to give rise to interpretations and estimations that are diverging more and more each day. The goal of the project ‘labour accounts’ as they exist for example in the Netherlands, is to make use of every existing statistical source in order to obtain a “labour account” similar to what is done in the national accounts. The objective is to create a correspondence between volumes of populations, revenues and work hours with the national product.

Since 1999, there is no official statistic concerning the active population. THe methodology that was used to produced this statistic dated from 1988 and needed a profound revision. This revision is the object of the project “labour accounts”. It is developed by the scientific promoters in close collaboration with the representatives of the Ministry of Labour and the support of the Statistics Service of the National Bank of Belgium. The project develops in close relation with the Regions in order to desegregate the national estimation on a regional and even local level.

Furthermore, the difficulty to create the needed statistics in this matter lead to the creation of a task force within the Institute of National Accounts in order to confront the methodology with the experts of the relevant institution who participate in the INA (Federal Planning Bureau, National Institute for Statistics and National Bank of Belgium). This combination of efforts enabled the INA to official approve the methodology as the relevant official source for estimating the active population.

This new statistics makes the best use of every relevant source of information, may it be administrative, surveys of even other sources. The principle leading the methodology is to conform to international standards in this field, in order to produced results and estimations that can be compared on an international level and that are as detailed as possible.

The new statistic was officially presented to the press in December 2002.

Documentation :

- the list of variables of variables in the datawarehouse;
- a description of the first 10 standard application;
- the advice by the Surveillance Committee concerning the 10 standard application (februari 6, 2001);
- the description of the socio-economic positions.

  • All these documents can be downloaded in PDF on the website of the Crossroads Bank (

  • The Crossroads bank produced a document explaining the access to its data for scientific research. This document can be downloaded in PDF. In French or Dutch

  • For more details, please contact Chris Brijs at the Crossroads Bank ( or the scientific promotor Peter van der hallen (
  • The short version of the methodological report can be downloaded (only in French and Dutch) on the website of the Ministry of Employment and Labour

Eén plus één is drie : datawarehouse arbeidsmarkt en sociale bescherming : verleden, heden en toekomst : rapport final  Vermandere, Caroline - Vanheerswynghels, Adinda - Van der Hallen, Peter  Gent : Academia Press, 2007 (PB6187)
[To download

Les comptes nationaux de l’emploi. Note méthodologique : rapport final    Bruxelles : Politique scientifique fédérale, 2004 (SP1404)
[To download

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