United States Business and Jobs: Structure and Changes by Sector and County, 1976-1988 (ICPSR 4471)

Published: Sep 27, 2006

Principal Investigator(s):
Paul D. Reynolds, Florida International University; Wilbur Maki, University of Minnesota


Version V1

The purpose of this study was to provide a description of both the current status and the changes in businesses and jobs in all United States counties, by 75 two-digit industry sectors. The study was designed to inquire to what extent new firm formation and small firm expansion reflect or cause economic growth. The data, originally assembled by Dun and Bradstreet, was edited and processed to adjust for errors and omissions to create a complete census of all business firms (single-site and multiple-site) and associated employment in six two-year periods: 1976-1978, 1978-1980, 1980-1982, 1982-1984, 1984-1986, and 1986-1988. The datasets contain detailed data for the years 1976-1988 on establishment births (new units entering the file), establishment deaths (existing units disappearing), expansion and contraction of all private-sector business establishments, and on the number of business jobs affected by these changes. Each record consists of a number of variables that (1) identify the county and industry, (2) describe the firms and jobs at the beginning of the two-year period, (3) provide descriptions at the end of the two-year period, and (4) that provide data on sources of changes during the two-year period. As the data are designed to be a complete census of all business units and all jobs, it can be aggregated to provide complete counts for any industry, region, or state or for the entire country.

Reynolds, Paul D., and Maki, Wilbur. United States Business and Jobs: Structure and Changes by Sector and County, 1976-1988. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2006-09-27. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR04471.v1

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United States Small Business Administration. Office of Advocacy

1976 -- 1988

1989-02 -- 1990-12

The datasets are structured with the county-industry cell as the unit of analysis, so if each of 75 industry sectors were represented in each of 3,124 counties, there would be a total of 234,300 records in each two-year pair. There is, however, no industry that is present in every county, and some are only present in a very few counties. As a result, the number of cases is less than maximum in each of the six files.

No sampling was done, since a complete census was used.

All United States commercial establishments.

industry by county

Data were extracted from records in the Duns Market Identifier (DMI) files maintained by the Dun and Bradstreet Corporation.

administrative records data




  • Data in this collection are available only to users at ICPSR member institutions.

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