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Occupational Coding

To gather respondents' employment information, we followed the standard practice of asking about respondents' work in several different ways: the name of their profession or occupation, the name of their job or position (dolzhnost) (which often includes information about workers' level of skill or responsibility), what duties they normally perform, etc. Their verbatim answers were put into a computer file as long string variables. With non-project funds, a computer program was developed which, functioning like a word processor thesaurus, proposed codes consistent with codes approved for similar answers in the past. However, we did not allow the computer program to assign codes automatically since the program might miss nuances in the answers. Rather, a coder was required to approve the proposed code.

Occupations were coded according to the four-digit International Standard Classification of Occupations: ISCO-88 (Geneva: International Labour Office, 1990). Considerable care was devoted to taking into account the idiosyncrasies of the Russian labor market. For example, medsestra is normally translated to mean "nurse." The ISCO classifies nurses as professionals and defines professionals as those involved in "Increasing the existing stock of knowledge, applying scientific and artistic concepts and theories to the solution of problems, and teaching about the foregoing in a systematic manner. Most occupations in this major group require skills at the fourth ISCO skill level." Since Russian nurses do not normally function at this level and were never considered to be professionals in the former Soviet Union, they were classified at the level that the ISCO assigns to nurses' aides in the West.

The four-digit codes can be collapsed into one-, two-, or three-digit codes. The following list provides the one-digit codes. This does not, in our estimation, constitute a valid ordinal scale. For example, many professionals also perform secondary managerial functions and may have more authority over other employees than some people who are classified as managers. Crafts workers may well be more skilled, educated, and highly paid than some clerks.

  1. Legislators, Senior Managers, Officials
  2. Professionals
  3. Technicians and Associate Professionals
  4. Clerks
  5. Service Workers and Market Workers
  6. Skilled Agricultural and Fishery Workers
  7. Craft and Related Trades
  8. Plant and Machine Operators and Assemblers
  9. Elementary (Unskilled) Occupations
  10. Army


In Round 22 database ISCO-08 were used also (variable rjcod08 ).

ISCO 88 Four-Digit Occupation Codes.pdf

ISCO-08 Structure, Group Definitions and Correspondence Tables







 

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