IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Out for the Count: A Social Scientist's Analysis of Unemployment Statistics in the UK


  • Paul Gregg


The validity of UK unemployment statistics was the focus of intense debate through the 1980s and again in 1992. This mainly concerned whether they were open to politically motivated manipulation. to some extent this argument has missed a wider point. Frequent changes of coverage and consistency between sources of information which provide measures of unemployment have led to a paucity of data that are suitable for social scientific study with its implied costs to our understanding of unemployment over the last 15 years. It is hoped that an increasing reliance on specifically designed survey techniques, rather than measures based on benefit administration data, will overcome many of these problems for the 1990s. The design of the Labour Force Survey should take on board the questions raised by social scientists. In particular, the shortage of available work should be measured by the broader indicators of social distress as well as the identification of excess labour supply in the labour market.

Suggested Citation

  • Paul Gregg, 1994. "Out for the Count: A Social Scientist's Analysis of Unemployment Statistics in the UK," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 157(2), pages 253-270, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jorssa:v:157:y:1994:i:2:p:253-270
    DOI: 10.2307/2983361

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Stutzer, Alois, 2020. "Happiness and public policy: a procedural perspective," Behavioural Public Policy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 4(2), pages 210-225, July.
    2. Rob Euwals & Marike Knoef & Daniel Vuuren, 2011. "The trend in female labour force participation: what can be expected for the future?," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 40(3), pages 729-753, May.
    3. Gert Thielemans & Dimitri Mortelmans, 2019. "Female Labour Force Participation After Divorce: How Employment Histories Matter," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 40(2), pages 180-193, June.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:jorssa:v:157:y:1994:i:2:p:253-270. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley Content Delivery). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.