Human Resources in Science & Technology (hrst)

Reference Metadata in Euro SDMX Metadata Structure (ESMS)

Compiling agency: Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union


Eurostat metadata
Reference metadata
1. Contact
2. Metadata update
3. Statistical presentation
4. Unit of measure
5. Reference Period
6. Institutional Mandate
7. Confidentiality
8. Release policy
9. Frequency of dissemination
10. Accessibility and clarity
11. Quality management
12. Relevance
13. Accuracy
14. Timeliness and punctuality
15. Coherence and comparability
16. Cost and Burden
17. Data revision
18. Statistical processing
19. Comment
Related Metadata
Annexes (including footnotes)



For any question on data and metadata, please contact: EUROPEAN STATISTICAL DATA SUPPORT

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1. Contact Top
1.1. Contact organisation

Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union

1.2. Contact organisation unit

G4: Innovation and information society 

1.5. Contact mail address

2920 Luxembourg LUXEMBOURG


2. Metadata update Top
2.1. Metadata last certified 01/07/2016
2.2. Metadata last posted 01/07/2016
2.3. Metadata last update 01/07/2016


3. Statistical presentation Top
3.1. Data description

The Human Resources in Science and Technology (HRST) domain provides data on stocks and flows (where flows in turn are divided into job-to-job mobility and education inflows).

Stocks and flows are the main statistics for HRST. Their methodologies interlink and are therefore presented together in one single metadata-file. This metadata-file is duplicated in the structure of Eurostat's online database, while statistics for stocks and flows are found in separate folders. Several breakdowns are available for stocks and flows indicators: sex, age, region, sector of economic activity, occupation, educational attainment, fields of education, although not all combinations are possible.

The data on stocks and job-to-job mobility are obtained from the European Union Labour Force Survey (EU LFS). The National Statistical Institutes are responsible for conducting the surveys and forwarding the results to Eurostat.

The data on education inflows are obtained from Eurostat's Education database and in turn obtained via the UNESCO/OECD/Eurostat questionnaire on education. The National Statistical Institutes are responsible for conducting the surveys, compiling the results and forwarding the results to Eurostat.

Please note that for paragraphs where no metadata for regional data has been specified, the regional metadata is identical to the metadata provided for the national data.

3.2. Classification system

HRST data on stock and flows are built based on the following standard classifications:

  • NACE
  • ISCO
  • ISCED
  • NUTS

Data by sector are collected according to the Statistical classification of economic activities in the European Community - NACE. With the implementation of NACE Rev.2 in 2008 a duplication of tables showing data by economic activity was needed. Henceforth, the set of tables to present the new results by NACE Rev.2 was introduced covering the data from 2008 and onwards. The set of tables by NACE Rev.1.1 cover the period from 1994 to 2008.

Data by occupation are based on the International Standard Classification of Occupation (ISCO). HRST data in Eurobase up to and including 2010 are built up based on the original classification ISCO-88. From 2011, ISCO-08 is employed. With the change of ISCO-88 to ISCO-08, the definition of HRST populations was updated accordingly.

Data by field of education are based on the Eurostat manual on fields of education and training (1999) and educational attainment on the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED1997).

The territorial classification of regional data is broken down according to the NUTS classification. The regional data are available at NUTS levels 1 and 2.

The current regional breakdown of the countries is based on:

1. Commission Regulation (EU) No 31/2011 amending annexes to Regulation (EC) No 1059/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the establishment of a common classification of territorial units for statistics (NUTS). The NUTS classification according to this regulation is shortly named NUTS-2010 classification.

2. Agreements between Eurostat and Acceding and Candidate countries as well as between Eurostat and EFTA countries, for which statistical regions have been coded in a way that resembles NUTS.

3.3. Coverage - sector

All sectors.

3.4. Statistical concepts and definitions

Stocks

Stocks provide information on the number of HRST at a particular point in time. For HRST statistics, stock data relate to the employment status as well as the occupational and educational profiles of individuals in any given year. An HRST stock is "the number of people at a particular point in time who fulfil the conditions of the definition of HRST". See 3.6 and Annex 1 under Annexes section for the conditions of HRST.

Breakdowns are given according to gender, age, region, sector of activity, occupation, educational attainment and field of study. See Annex 3 under Annexes section for a detailed description of the HRST stock indicators and breakdowns.

The definitions of employment and unemployment are the same as used in the primary data source EU LFS (see EU LFS metadata under Related metadata section) and follow the definitions and recommendations of the International Labour Organisation. The definition of unemployment is further specified in Commission Regulation (EC) No 1897/2000.

For more details, please consult the EU-LFS (Statistics Explained) - Methodology.

Flows

Job-to-job mobility in this context is defined as the movement of individuals between one job and another from one year to the next. It does not include inflows into the labour market from a situation of unemployment or inactivity.

The rates are built up using information both on when the current job began and the working status of the person in question one year before the survey. People must fulfil the condition of belonging to HRST in both periods of time. Users should note that because of the definition referring to people employed in both years, as far as mobility is concerned the coverage will be narrower than overall HRST which also includes unemployed or inactive individuals with a third level education.

See Annex 4 under Annexes section for a detailed description of the HRST mobility indicators and breakdowns.

The data on education inflow contains the real (graduation) and potential (participation) inflows from the education system into the stocks of Human Resources in Science and Technology (HRST) at the national level. Students graduating at the ISCED1997 6th level should, however, already be counted as a part of the HRST stocks since enrolment in education at the ISCED1997 level 6 normally requires a degree at the ISCED1997 level 5. Breakdowns are given according to gender, age and selected fields of study. Foreign students (students with nationality other than the country in which they are studying) are included in total students but also separately accounted for. Data are available as total number in thousands and total numbers set in relation to the population aged 20-29 or 25-29.
The conditions of the above educational requirements are considered according to the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED).

See Annex 5 under Annexes section for a detailed description of the HRST education inflow indicators and breakdowns.

Not all national tables are necessarily available at regional level. To consult the list of available regional datasets, please consult the Annex 7 under Annexes section.

3.5. Statistical unit

Stocks and job-to-job mobility

The observation units of measurement for which results are obtained from the EU LFS survey are persons in private households.

Education inflow

The observation units of measurement for which results are obtained from the EU Education survey are participants and graduations.

Participants refer to the number of students enrolled during the reference period.

Graduations refer to the number of qualifications taken during the reference period. One graduate is counted once for every qualification obtained.

3.6. Statistical population

Stocks

Data examines the existing labour market stocks of HRST at national and regional levels. Unless otherwise stated, data are aggregated in line with the recommendations laid down in The Manual on the Measurement of Human Resources devoted to S&T (Canberra Manual) issued in 1995 by the OECD.

HRST are people who fulfil one or other of the following conditions:

  • have successfully completed a tertiary level education;
  • not formally qualified as above but employed in a S&T occupation where the above qualifications are normally required.

The conditions of the above educational or occupational requirements are considered according to the internationally harmonized standards of ISCED and ISCO.

Eurostat does not include managers (ISCO 1) in the HRST population. Eurostat excludes anyone below the age of 15 or over the age of 74 from the HRST population so the HRST statistics are based on the age-group 15-74 years. For the user it may be advisable to use the age-group 25-64 which is available in the HRST tables.

For more information see Annex 1 under Annexes section .

Job-to-job mobility

Mobility (job-to-job mobility) of employed HRST is built up by considering the number of HRST employed in the years T-1 and T, that have changed jobs during the twelve month period. It is expressed as a proportion of the total number of HRST employed in year T.

Employed HRST are those people who:

  • have successfully completed a tertiary education and are employed in any kind of job; or
  • are not formally qualified as above but employed in a S&T occupation where the above qualifications are normally required

Education inflow

The data covers annual real (graduation) and potential (participation) inflows from the education system into HRST at the national level, by gender, some domains of study relevant to science and technology and also according to the citizenship of the students. Those people graduating at the ISCED 6 level will, however, already be a part of the HRST stocks since ISCED 6 refers to advanced research for which it is necessary to have a first degree.

The conditions of the above educational requirements are considered according to the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED). For more information see Annex 2 under Annexes section.

3.7. Reference area

European Union aggregates (EU27 and EU28 since 2008), EU Member States and available Candidate Countries and EFTA countries.

3.8. Coverage - Time

For HRST stocks and job-to-job mobility statistics data are available in many countries from 1994 onwards, but differences exist and some years are missing for some countries and breakdowns. The existence of HRST statistics further depends on their reliability (see Annex 6 under Annexes section).

For education inflows statistics data are available according to ISCED1997 in many countries from academic year 1997/1998 onwards, but differences exist and certain years are missing.

3.9. Base period

Not applicable.


4. Unit of measure Top

HRST statistics are shown in number of persons in thousands. These numbers are also related to various populations like for example ‘percentage of total population, 'percentage of active population' or 'percentage of employed population'.

For detailed information on which unit of measure is used for each HRST table see Annexes 3-5 under Annexes section.

For details concerning the computation and interpretation of units and measures used in HRST tables see Annex 8 under Annexes section.


5. Reference Period Top

Stocks: Annual average data. (The EU LFS annual average dataset is used, for more information see EU LFS metadata under Related metadata section.)

Job-to-job mobility: Annual data. (The EU LFS annual dataset is used, for more information see EU LFS metadata under Related metadata section.)

Education inflow: Academic year.


6. Institutional Mandate Top
6.1. Institutional Mandate - legal acts and other agreements

Being part of Science and Technology domain, data regarding indicators for HRST are produced according to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 995/2012 of 26 October 2012 laying down detailed rules for the implementation of Decision No 1608/2003/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council concerning the production and development of Community statistics on science and technology.

The legal basis, for producing stocks and job-to-job mobility indicators, is the same like in case of primary data source used for building up these indicators, the legal basis in place for the European Union Labour Force Survey. Data are extracted from Eurostat's European Union Labour Force Survey database in order to build up the indicators of interest.

HRST education inflow data are extracted from Eurostat's Education database and are collected via the UNESCO/OECD/Eurostat questionnaire on education. Education data are covered by Regulation (EC) No 452/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council concerning the production and development of statistics on education and lifelong learning.

The current regional breakdown of the countries is based on:

1. Commission Regulation (EU) No 31/2011 amending annexes to Regulation (EC) No 1059/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the establishment of a common classification of territorial units for statistics (NUTS). The NUTS classification according to this regulation is shortly named NUTS-2010 classification.

2. Agreements between Eurostat and Acceding and Candidate countries as well as between Eurostat and EFTA countries, for which statistical regions have been coded in a way that resembles NUTS.

6.2. Institutional Mandate - data sharing

Not applicable.


7. Confidentiality Top
7.1. Confidentiality - policy

Regulation (EC) No 223/2009 on European statistics (recital 24 and Article 20(4)) of 11 March 2009 (OJ L 87, p. 164), stipulates the need to establish common principles and guidelines ensuring the confidentiality of data used for the production of European statistics and the access to those confidential data with due account for technical developments and the requirements of users in a democratic society.

7.2. Confidentiality - data treatment

HRST statistics follow the rules and guidelines of the primary data sources. For more information see related metadata under Related metadata section.


8. Release policy Top
8.1. Release calendar

Data are available for release t+9 months after the end of the reference year t for stocks and job-to-job mobility of HRST.

Data are available for release around t+2 years after the reference period for education inflows.

8.2. Release calendar access

Not applicable.

8.3. Release policy - user access

In line with the Community legal framework and the European Statistics Code of Practice Eurostat disseminates European statistics on Eurostat's website (see item 10 - 'Accessibility and clarity') respecting professional independence and in an objective, professional and transparent manner in which all users are treated equitably. The detailed arrangements are governed by the Eurostat protocol on impartial access to Eurostat data for users.


9. Frequency of dissemination Top

Annual dissemination.


10. Accessibility and clarity Top
10.1. Dissemination format - News release

None

10.2. Dissemination format - Publications

HRST statistics are used in publications which can be downloaded from Eurostat's website or through Statistics Explained.

Regional data: Eurostat regional yearbook

10.3. Dissemination format - online database

Please consult free data on-line (in Science and Technology domain) or refer to contact details.

10.4. Dissemination format - microdata access

None as this domain only has secondary data. For micro-data access for the primary sources see related metadata under Related metadata section.

10.5. Dissemination format - other

Not applicable.

10.6. Documentation on methodology

The Manual on the Measurement of Human Resources Devoted to Science and Technology - Canberra Manual

Metadata for the domain Employment and Unemployment which is the main source for EU LFS based statistics (see Related metadata section).

Metadata for the Education statistics (see Related metadata section).

10.7. Quality management - documentation

The main quality issues relate to the primary data sources (see EU LFS and Education metadata under Related metadata section).


11. Quality management Top
11.1. Quality assurance

The quality assurance of HRST statistics is linked to the quality of the EU-LFS data. Major milestones in the improvement of EU-LFS quality have been the adoption of Council Regulation (EC) No 577/98 on the organisation of a continuous, quarterly sample survey in the Community; the adoption of Commission Regulation (EC) No 1897/2000 concerning the operational definition of unemployment and the 12 principles for formulating questions on labour status; the adoption of Regulation (EC) No 1991/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council making the continuous survey mandatory from 2003 onwards (except Italy from 2004 and Germany from 2005) and the adoption of Regulation (EC) No 2257/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council extending the survey characteristics and introducing the distinction between structural and quarterly variables. (see EU LFS and Education metadata under Related metadata section).

11.2. Quality management - assessment

Quality assurance for HRST statistics is dependent on the primary source (LFS and Education statistics) which go through the validation procedures before dissemination. However, with respect to the highest quality assurance the raw data used for compilation of HRST statistics are submitted to validation tests and quality checking. The outcomes of the calculations are as well controlled and compared inside domain and among domains. (see EU LFS and Education metadata under Related metadata section).

EU-LFS and derived HRST statistics have overall high quality. National LFS surveys are considered as reliable sources applying high standards with regard to the methodology. However, the EU-LFS, like any survey, is based upon a sample of the population. The results are therefore subject to the usual types of errors associated with random sampling. Based on the sample size and design in the various Member States, Eurostat implements basic guidelines intended to avoid publication of figures that are unreliable or to give warning of the unreliability of the figures.

For a detailed description of the methods and concepts used, as well as for other documents related to the EU-LFS, please consult the EU-LFS (Statistics Explained) webpage.


12. Relevance Top
12.1. Relevance - User Needs

The HRST database is based on a common manual of the measurement of human resources devoted to science and technology - the Canberra Manual, jointly written by the OECD, the DGXII and Eurostat of the European Commission, the UNESCO and the International Labour Office (ILO). This manual, the fifth in the "Frascati family" of manuals on the measurement of S&T activities, is a guideline for the measurement of HRST and the analysis of such data.

In this manual, highly skilled human resources are described as essential for the development and diffusion of knowledge and constitute the crucial link between technological progress and economic growth, social development and environmental well-being. Countries and international organisations highlighted the political and economical importance of a need for internationally comparable, harmonized and high quality data on human resources.

12.2. Relevance - User Satisfaction

In 2010 the number of downloads of HRST statistics from Eurostat's website was analysed. Between in one year (May 2009 to November 2009) 5 795 visitors downloaded HRST statistics while in the comparable period in 2005 the number of downloads amounted to 2 001. This net increase of visits shows the statistics are relevant. HRST stock tables had the highest number of downloads.

A user needs survey was carried out in 2008 where it was found that;

  • The level of satisfaction for HRST stock data at national level is fairly good.
  • Respondents are satisfied with the coverage, timeliness and reliability.
  • Many respondents lacked knowledge on the methodological issues associated with the production of HRST data.
  • Only 10% of the users seemed unsatisfied with the HRST concepts.

To summarise, the HRST users seem in general satisfied, but the methodological issues are sometimes criticised for being complex. In other words, for first time users it is not easy to understand the concept of HRST.

12.3. Completeness

An analysis of completeness of HRST variables has been conducted on different occasions for different HRST variables. The results show a successive decrease of the non-availability rate, in other words the completeness of the HRST statistics is increasing with every year.


13. Accuracy Top
13.1. Accuracy - overall

Data on HRST stocks and job-to-job mobility as issued of sample survey are affected by the variability and bias related to this type of data collection. Therefore for the HRST statistics the accuracy is dependent on the primary sources, see Related metadata section.

13.2. Sampling error

Stocks and job-to-job mobility data comes from the EU LFS survey. These data are, as with any sample survey based upon a sample of the population, subject to sampling errors. For the EU LFS survey, experience shows that at national level the survey information provides sufficiently accurate estimates for the levels and structures of the various aggregates into which the labour force is divided, provided that analyses of this type are confined to levels of a certain size.

Survey results at regional level may, however, be affected by considerable sampling errors, even for relatively large groups of the population. Reliability of the results is assured by the size of the samples and the sampling methods used, in addition to careful and thorough planning of the various survey operations and rigorous administration of all phases of the survey. Based upon the sample size and design in the various Member States, Eurostat implements basic guidelines intended to avoid publication of figures which are statistically unreliable.

Education inflow data are obtained via the UOE questionnaire on education. This is an administrative survey where the National Statistical Institutes are responsible for conducting it and for forwarding the results to Eurostat. Even if no detailed information was found regarding reliability of the used data coming from the UOE joint questionnaire, this type of survey should guarantee a high level of accuracy. In addition all the information, as attached flags to data, has been kept during the HRST data processing.

See further details in the metadata for the primary sources under Related metadata section.

13.3. Non-sampling error

For stocks and job-to-job mobility see EU LFS metadata under Related metadata section. Processing errors after the data has been extracted from the primary source are rare as the data are validated carefully before each update.


14. Timeliness and punctuality Top
14.1. Timeliness

Data are available for release t+9 months after the end of the reference year t for stocks and job-to-job mobility of HRST.

Data are available for release around t+2 years after the reference period for education inflows.

14.2. Punctuality

Good, but dependent on timeliness and availability of primary data, as HRST statistics are normally updated when data for all Member States are available.


15. Coherence and comparability Top
15.1. Comparability - geographical

Comparability is considered as good as some base indicators are included in each country's survey.

As the HRST concept crosses educational attainment with occupational attainment, national comparisons should be done by looking at the national labour markets and national educational systems.

15.2. Comparability - over time

Breaks in series exist (flagged with 'b') because of improvements and changes in survey methodologies or definitions of main concepts and way of data collection.

Comparability of regional data over time will be affected by breaks in the NUTS classification.

15.3. Coherence - cross domain

Coherence of statistics is their adequacy to be reliably combined in different ways and for various uses. When originating from a single source, statistics are normally coherent in the sense that elementary results derived from the concerned survey can be reliably combined in numerous ways to produce more complex results.

Comparability of the stocks and job-to-job mobility can be made with the Eurostat's Labour Force Survey statistics and High-tech statistics, as they all have the same source and the processing errors are considered to be negligible. But users need to pay attention to the HRST concept if making comparisons with another domain.

Example: Total HRST should not be compared with total employment as the total stock of HRST also comprise unemployed and inactive. If this comparison is needed the choice could be to use the HRSTO or HRSTC sub-populations or use a HRST table which only contains employed HRST.

Comparability of the education inflow statistics can be made with the Eurostat's Education statistics, as they have the same source and no further processing of the data are done in the HRST domain.

15.4. Coherence - internal

Comparability between the stock and job-to-job mobility statistics and the education inflow statistics should be done very carefully as the primary sources have different methodology.

Comparability within the stock and job-to-job mobility can be made but attention is needed to the HRST concept.

Example: An HRST table showing field of education can not be compared to a table showing employed HRST. Only HRSTE has the field of education dimension and not all employed HRST are HRSTE.


16. Cost and Burden Top

There is no additional cost and burden for respondents (national statistical institutes) in collecting the data other than those related to the primary data sources. The cost and burden related to the production of HRST statistics is therefore related to Eurostat's budget.

HRST statistics are a good value added of using already collected data without substantial additional cost and burden for Eurostat beyond the primary sources.


17. Data revision Top
17.1. Data revision - policy

No data revisions are made at this secondary level but instead made at the primary level. The exception is if an error occurs only at the secondary level which is not coming from the primary data (see under Related metadata section).

17.2. Data revision - practice

Upon release, data on stocks and job-to-job mobility are final unless otherwise stated. The complete time series are updated once a year when new annual data are available for all Member States (normally in quarter 3 in year t+1). However, the source data, Labour Force Survey data, may be frequently updated over the year.

For data on education inflow the complete time series for data using ISCED1997 are updated on an annual basis when new annual data are available for all Member States. There is not a set time for this update but normally it is updated in year t+2.


18. Statistical processing Top
18.1. Source data

Stocks and job-to-job mobility

Data are extracted from the EU LFS, with data re-aggregated into HRST stocks. The EU LFS is a survey of households. The basic data are forwarded to Eurostat by the Member States and other countries participating. The data are survey based and are therefore extrapolated from a sample of the population by each Member State to represent the whole of the resident population. Extrapolation techniques can differ between countries.

Education inflow

Data on students are collected through the UOE (UNESCO-UIS/OECD/Eurostat) data collection on education systems, these figures are in some of the indicators set into relation with population totals that are obtained from the EU LFS. The national data collections on participation in and graduation from education are normally based on total enumerations that are in many cases extractions from administrative registers.

18.2. Frequency of data collection

Stocks and job-to-job mobility: Yearly

Education inflow: Yearly

18.3. Data collection

Stocks and job-to-job mobility: See EU LFS metadata under Related metadata section.

Education inflow: National data for UOE data collection on educational systems are compiled at the Educational Ministries or National Statistical Offices. The international organisations process and verify the data after their reception. See more in Education metadata under Related metadata section.

18.4. Data validation

HRST data are validated using comparisons with previous years and the situation in other countries. If anomalies are discovered they are reported back to the primary data sources within Eurostat (EU LFS and Education). If needed countries are contacted for an explanation. If the result is considered not reliable enough, the data are not disseminated. Breaks in series are identified and flagged in a similar procedure.

Since 2012, first year of application of Commission Regulation (EU) No 88/2011 implementing Regulation (EC) No 452/2008, there is a joint data validation made by Eurostat and OECD on the data transmitted by the 24 countries that are both EU or EFTA, and OECD members. Each organisation validates the data for the remaining member countries. The validated data are shared between the three organisations.

For more information see metadata for the primary sources under Related metadata section.

18.5. Data compilation

Dependent on the primary data sources. See metadata under Related metadata section.

18.6. Adjustment

Dependent on the primary data sources. See metadata under Related metadata section.


19. Comment Top

None


Related metadata Top
educ_uoe_h_esms - Education-administrative data until 2012 (ISCED1997)
employ_esms - Employment and unemployment (Labour Force Survey)


Annexes Top
Annex 1 - HRST stocks
Annex 2 - Education
Annex 3 - HRST stock indicators
Annex 4 - HRST mobility indicators
Annex 5 - HRST education indicators
Annex 6 - Reliability limits
Annex 7 - Regional tables
Annex 8 - Computation units and measures