Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung

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Employment survey for East Germany (DDR) 1989 (BTE1989)

The Emplyment Survey for East Germany 1989 (Beschäftigtenerhebung 1989, BTE1989) is the last employment survey for the German Democratic Republic (GDR) before German re-unification.
The Emplyment Survey for East Germany 1989 (Beschäftigtenerhebung 1989, BTE1989) is referenced on 09/30/1989 and provides detailed information on the scope and structure of emplyoment in the former GDR along the dimensions gender, age, regions and industries. This survey represents an important reference as well as a statistical basis for the measurement of the impact on the employment structure caused by the extensive transformation process in the course of the German re-unification.


The detailed dataset description is available under working Tools.

Content characteristics

Category Description

structuring characteristics:
type of establishment, districts, DDR-areas, federal states,, employment agencies, type of ownership, division of economic activity, industry, class of economic activity, group of economic activity, type of region
counting block, weighting of employment per establishment:
in each case total, female and male: 
employees, permanently employees, blue- and white-collar employee, members of the cooperative, permanently assisting employees, part-time employees, employees at the age of retirement, not permanently employees, year of birth

Data unit Employees of East Germany (DDR)
Number of cases 8.545.398 employees (based on calculations by IAB) on September 30, 1989
Period covered September 30, 1989
Time reference Survey period. Reference date September 30, 1989
Regional structure Areas and employment offices broken down by associated districts
Regional status quo East Germany (DDR) 1989

Methodological characteristics
Category Description
Method of data collection census
Frequency of data collection onetime
File organisation, format and size The data is stored in one file: BTE1989.dta, STATA (8 MB)


Data access

Category Description
Data Access On-site use and subsequent remote data access
Degree of anonymisation weakly anonymous
Sensitive variables None
Standards for the citation of data and data documentation

'This study uses the weakly anonymous data of the Employment survey in East Germany (DDR) 1989 from the IAB. Data access was provided via on-site use at the Research Data Centre (FDZ) of the German Federal Employment Agency (BA) at the Institute for Employment Research (IAB) and subsequently remote data access.'
Data documentation:
Rudolph, Helmut (2016): DDR Berufstätigenerhebung 1989. FDZ Datenreport, 02/2016 (de), Nürnberg

Working Tools

Dataset Descriptions

All details on variables are included in

Data Access

The dataset of the Employment survey in East Germany (DDR) 1989 only available for replication studies via the following ways of access:

  • On-site Use
  • Remote Data Access

If you want to use this dataset we ask you to contact us directly (

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