Journal Article

Introduction and overview

Timothy M. Smeeding

in Socio-Economic Review

Published on behalf of Society for the Advancement of Socio-Economics

Volume 2, issue 2, pages 149-163
Published in print May 2004 | ISSN: 1475-1461
Published online May 2004 | e-ISSN: 1475-147X | DOI:
Introduction and overview

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  • Moral Philosophy
  • Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Welfare Economics
  • Political Economy
  • Economic Sociology


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The Luxembourg Income Study (LIS) project, founded in 1983, is one of the oldest and best-known examples of cross-national social-science infrastructure. Some 29 nations and 23 sponsors team together to provide internet-accessible, privacy-protected, household income microdata to over 400 users in 35 nations. The project is financed by annual contributions by these nations' national science foundations, government agencies and the national statistical offices. This paper introduces a series of contributions which marked the LIS 20th anniversary held in July 2003. Four papers survey the contributions that LIS has made in studies of poverty, inequality, the family and labour markets. These are followed by three original articles which show how LIS can be used to highlight one or more nations in comparative perspective. The remainder of this article describes the LIS project and aspects of the 20th Anniversary Conference not covered in the papers in this volume, including future plans to add a range of countries, the availability of a web tabulator for non-programmers to access LIS data, and the new Luxembourg Wealth Study. We also briefly describe where the project is today, and where and how international data collection efforts can improve upon both the quality of income data and their free dissemination to the international research community.

Keywords: microdata; JEL classification: C81 Methodology for Collecting, Estimating, and Organizing Microeconomic Data

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy ; Corporate Social Responsibility ; Welfare Economics ; Political Economy ; Economic Sociology

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