The Survey of Income and Program Participation
(SIPP) is a statistical survey
Survey methodology is the field that studies surveys, that is, the sample of individuals from a population with a view towards making statistical inferences about the population using the sample. Polls about public opinion, such as political beliefs, are reported in the news media in democracies....
conducted by the United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...
. The main objective of the SIPP is to provide accurate and comprehensive information about the income of American individuals and households and the participation of these people in income transfer programs
In economics, a transfer payment is a redistribution of income in the market system. These payments are considered to be exhaustive because they do not directly absorb resources or create output...
SIPP data allow the government to evaluate the effectiveness of Federal, state, and local programs.
The SIPP is designed as a continuous series of panel
In statistics and econometrics, the term panel data refers to multi-dimensional data. Panel data contains observations on multiple phenomena observed over multiple time periods for the same firms or individuals....
s, with a sample size from approximately 14,000 to 37,000 households. Each panel lasts from 2 ½ to 4 years. The SIPP sample is a multistage-stratified sample of the U.S. civilian noninstitutionalized population. The respondents are all household members 15 years or older.
Each panel is asked questions about whether or not they participate in the labor force, what programs in which they participate, and questions about their income. Each wave of interviews lasts 4 months. Interviews are conduced by personal visits and telephone calls.
In addition to the core questions, a number of “topical modules” are added to the SIPP panel, which include questions on personal history, child care, wealth, program eligibility, child support, disability, school enrollment, taxes, and annual income.
The Census Bureau sponsors the survey under the authority of Title 13, United States Code
The Code of Laws of the United States of America is a compilation and codification of the general and permanent federal laws of the United States...
, Section 182.
The SIPP was developed from the Income Survey Development Program, conducted between 1977 and 1981, which developed survey data collection strategies and instruments as well as data processing strategies for the SIPP.
The Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics (SLID), from Statistics Canada
Statistics Canada is the Canadian federal government agency commissioned with producing statistics to help better understand Canada, its population, resources, economy, society, and culture. Its headquarters is in Ottawa....
, performs a similar function to the SIPP. It is a longitudinal study following each of a panel of 15,000 households for 6 years.