National Archive of Data on Arts and Culture

This study is maintained and distributed by the National Archive of Data on Arts & Culture (NADAC). NADAC is supported by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Current Population Survey: Annual Social and Economic (ASEC) Supplement Survey, 2015 (ICPSR 36525)

Principal Investigator(s): United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census; United States Department of Labor. Bureau of Labor Statistics


The Annual Social and Economic (ASEC) 2015 Supplement is part of the Current Population Survey (CPS) Series. The CPS is a source of the official Government statistics on employment and unemployment. The Census Bureau conducts the ASEC (known as the Annual Demographic File prior to 2003) over a three-month period, in February, March, and April, with most of the data collected in the month of March. The ASEC uses two sets of survey questions, the basic CPS and a set of supplemental questions.

The CPS, administered monthly, is a labor force survey providing current estimates of the economic status and activities of the population of the United States. Specifically, the CPS provides estimates of total employment (both farm and nonfarm), nonfarm self-employed persons, domestics, and unpaid helpers in nonfarm family enterprises, wage, and salaried employees, and estimates of total unemployment.

In addition to the basic CPS questions, respondents were asked questions from the ASEC, which provides supplemental data on poverty, geographic mobility/migration, and work experience. Comprehensive work experience information was given on the employment status, occupation, and industry of persons aged 15 and over. Additional data for persons aged 15 and older were available concerning weeks worked and hours per week worked, reason not working full-time, total income and supplemental income components. Demographic variables include age, sex, race, Hispanic origin, marital status, veteran status, educational attainment, occupation, and income. Data on employment and income refer to the previous calendar year, although demographic data refer to the time of the survey.

The occupation and industry information variables in this data collection can help the data users identify individuals who worked in arts and culture related fields. The occupations are listed in a category entitled "Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Occupations," which includes professions such as artists, designers, actors, musicians, and writers (see Appendix B of the User Guide for further category details). Industries related to the arts and culture are in the "Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation" category (see Appendix C of the User Guide for further category details).

The ASEC data provided by the Census Bureau are distributed in a hierarchical file structure, with three record types present: Household, Family, and Person. The ASEC is designed to be a multistage stratified sample of housing units, where the hierarchical file structure can be thought of as a person within a family within a household unit. Here the main unit of analysis is the household unit.

Access Notes

  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.


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Study Description


United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census, and United States Department of Labor. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Current Population Survey: Annual Social and Economic (ASEC) Supplement Survey, 2015. ICPSR36525-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2016-10-25.

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  • EndNote XML (EndNote X4.0.1 or higher)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    actors, alimony, armed forces, artists, census data, child support, dancers, demographic characteristics, economic conditions, employee benefits, employment, energy assistance, full-time employment, health insurance, Hispanic or Latino origins, household composition, households, income, industry, job change, labor force, layoffs, Medicaid, Medicare, museums, musicians, occupational status, part-time employment, pensions, population characteristics, population estimates, population migration, poverty, public housing, recreation, unemployment, veterans, wages and salaries, welfare services, working hours

Geographic Coverage:    United States

Time Period:   

  • 2014--2015

Unit of Observation:    Household, Family, Individual

Universe:    The civilian noninstitutional population of the United States living in housing units, and members of the Armed Forces living in civilian housing units on a military base or in a household not on a military base.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

Users are strongly encouraged to read the User Guide, which contains the questionnaire for the supplement, as well as additional technical documentation.

The Data Dictionary in the User Guide includes "FILLER" variables; however, the dataset provided here does not include these variables. Therefore, the beginning column listed for each variable in the Data Dictionary may not match with the column location of the variable in the dataset.

The universe statements for each variable are defined in either the basic or supplement record layout of the User Guide.

The Annual Social and Economic Supplement was formerly called the Annual Demographic File.


Study Purpose:    The purpose of the Annual Social and Economic Supplement survey is to collect social and economic characteristics information for each person who is a household member as of the interview date. The survey administers questions on income to measure the level of family income and household composition from which poverty status is determined.

Study Design:    The Annual Social and Economic Supplement 2015 survey was conducted as part of the Current Population Survey, an ongoing data collection effort of the United States Census Bureau. ASEC was administered to a portion of the CPS sample in February, March, and April of 2015.

Sample:    A multistage probability sample was used for the housing unit. The sample was based on the results of the decennial Census, with coverage in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The ASEC is also supplemented with a sample of Hispanic households identified previous months. More detailed information about the sampling frame can be found in the User Guide.

Time Method:    Cross-sectional


These data contain 5 weights designed for calculating population level estimates and an additional 161 replicate weights.

  • A_FNLWGT is the final weight designed for generating population estimates for items on the regular monthly CPS. The final weight is the product of: (1) the basic weight, (2) adjustments for special weighting, (3) noninterview adjustment, (4) first stage ratio adjustment factor, and (5) second stage ratio adjustment factor. This final weight should be used when producing estimates from the basic CPS data.

  • MARSUPWT is the ASEC Supplement weight. Differences in the questionnaire, sample and data uses for the CPS and the ASEC Supplement result in the need for additional adjustment procedures for this weight. The supplement weight should be used for producing estimates from ASEC Supplement data.

  • HSUP_WGT is the household weight and FSUP_WGT is the family weight. Household and family weights are the weights assigned from the householder or reference person after all adjustments have been made and should be used when tabulating estimates of families-households.

  • A_ERNLWT is an earning weight, which is a simple ratio estimation to the person's labor force status by age, race, and sex. When tabulating estimates of earnings based on basic CPS data, use the earnings weight.

Please see the User Guide for further weighting information.

Mode of Data Collection:    computer-assisted personal interview (CAPI), computer-assisted telephone interview (CATI)

Response Rates:    For the cases eligible for the 2015 ASEC, the basic CPS household-level nonresponse rate was 13.4 percent. The household-level nonresponse rate for the ASEC was an additional 14.2 percent. These two non-response rates lead to a combined supplement nonresponse rate of 25.7 percent.

Extent of Processing:   ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Created variable labels and/or value labels.
  • Standardized missing values.
  • Created online analysis version with question text.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.

Restrictions: Users of the data must agree to the Terms of Use presented on the NADAC Website and available through the link in each codebook.


Original ICPSR Release:   2016-10-25



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