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Federal Employee Attitudes Survey, 1979-1980 (ICPSR 7804)

Principal Investigator(s): United States Office of Personnel Management


This data collection contains the results of two surveys administered in 1979 and 1980 to gather information on United States federal employee attitudes and perceptions of federal personnel management practices and working conditions. Conducted as part of the evaluation of the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978, these surveys are based on government-wide samples of employees. Respondents in each of the studies completed a self-administered questionnaire. Part 1 includes information gathered in the 1979 survey, such as personal and employment background, current position, job and pay rate satisfaction, work relationships with other employees and supervisors, work group performance, attitudes about the agency's organizational culture, and perceived promotional opportunities. Part 2 contains the results of the 1980 survey, which was administered to a sample of senior federal employees. The type of data gathered is similar to that in Part 1, with additional information concerning respondents' attitudes about the Senior Executive Service (SES), labor/management relations, and job performance incentives.

Access Notes

  • Data in this collection are available only to users at ICPSR member institutions. Please log in so we can determine if you are with a member institution and have access to these data files.


DS0:  Study-Level Files
DS1:  1979 Survey - Download All Files (43.242 MB)
SAS    SPSS    Stata    R    ASCII    Excel/TSV
ASCII + SAS Setup    SPSS Setup    Stata Setup   
DS2:  1980 Survey - Download All Files (29.365 MB)
SAS    SPSS    Stata    R    ASCII    Excel/TSV
ASCII + SAS Setup    SPSS Setup    Stata Setup   

Study Description


United States Office of Personnel Management. Federal Employee Attitudes Survey, 1979-1980. ICPSR07804-v2. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2013-08-29. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR07804.v2

Persistent URL: https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR07804.v2

Export Citation:

  • RIS (generic format for RefWorks, EndNote, etc.)
  • EndNote XML (EndNote X4.0.1 or higher)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    career expectations, civil service, demographic characteristics, federal government, government employees, job history, job performance, job satisfaction, labor relations, management, occupational mobility, organizational culture, perceptions, personnel evaluation, training, wages and salaries, work attitudes, work environment

Geographic Coverage:    United States

Time Period:   

  • 1979--1980

Date of Collection:   

  • 1979--1980

Unit of Observation:    Individual

Universe:    United States federal government employees.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

Some of the demographic variables were recoded to protect confidentiality. For additional information, please see the "Modifications in the Data" section in the "Original ICPSR Codebook, 1982 Release".


Sample:    The 1979 survey was distributed to a stratified random sample of 20,000 federal civilian employees from over 20 federal departments and agencies, and the 1980 survey was conducted with a sample of senior federal employees.

Time Method:    Cross-sectional

Mode of Data Collection:    self-enumerated questionnaire

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.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.


Original ICPSR Release:   1984-05-03

Version History:

  • 2013-08-29 The ASCII data were converted from CARD-IMAGE to LRECL format. The SPSS setup files were updated to conform to current standards. SAS and Stata setup files, as well as SPSS and Stata system files, a SAS transport (CPORT) file, an R data file, and a tab-delimited data file have been added to the collection. The codebook was updated.
  • 2006-01-18 File CB7804.ALL.PDF was removed from any previous datasets and flagged as a study-level file, so that it will accompany all downloads.

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