hi there, looking for some help

we are looking for the unemployment rate, labor force participation rate, and employment to population ratio for Pennsylvania, Illinois, Connecticut, and Oregon in the years 1980, 1990, 2000.



If microdatais what you are interested in, the IPUMS-CPS project offers all of the variables you need to look at unemployment. The Current Population Survey is a monthly survey designed to measure unemployment after the Great Depression. More information about the CPS can be found here. The variables LABFORCEand EMPSTAT are helpful when looking at unemployment, as they identify whether or not respondents participated in the labor force during the preceding week, as well as their employment status. You can then create an employment to population ratio yourself with the variable STATEFIP after applying the appropriate weight to make the data representative at the state level.

To learn about how to use the IPUMS-CPS website, I recommend watching our video tutorials. The videos will walk you step-by-step through the process of creating an IPUMS account, using the extract system, and opening that extract in the statistical package of your choice (Stata, SPSS, SAS, Excel). If you do not have access to a statistical package, there is also a tutorial on how to use our Online Analysis System. I also suggest checking out our FAQ page. Here, you can read answers to common questions, like using weights, understanding the extract system, and citing our data.

If aggregated data will suit your needs, I recommend checking out another MPC project: NHGIS. NHGIS offers many of the official Census tables going back to 1790 at several geographic levels, including state. While NHGIS is primarily focused on mapping data, the summary tables can be extracted independent of shape files as .csv files with optional descriptive headers. Additionally, the Census’ American FactFinder site is another source for Census tables.