Joint Programming Initiative

More Years, Better Lives

The Potential and Challenges of Demographic Change

Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection (DWH LM&SP) - old age and survivor’s pensions
Datawarehouse Arbeidsmarkt en Sociale Bescherming (DWH AM&SB) - rust- en overlevingspensioenen

Topic
Social Systems and Welfare
Work and Productivity
Relevance for this Topic
Country Belgium
URL
www.ksz-bcss.fgov.be/nl/bcss/nodepage/content/websites/belgium/
www.ksz-bcss.fgov.be/nl/bcss/nodepage/content/websites/belgium/
More Topics

Governance

Contact information

Chris Brijs
Crossroads Bank for Social Security
Willebroekkaai 38
1000 Brussels
Belgium
Phone: +32 2 741 83 67
Fax: +32 2 741 83 00
Email: chris.brijs(at)ksz-bcss.fgov.be
Url: www.ksz-bcss.fgov.be/nl/bcss/nodepage/content/websites/belgium/

Timeliness, transparency

The data are available one year following collection.

Type of data


Registry

Type of Study


Longitudinal administrative data

Data gathering method

Registries

Type of data


Registry

Type of Study


Longitudinal administrative data

Data gathering method

Registries


Access to data


The data are available for academic and policy research. Researchers and policy-makers can either use the microdata or online modules to generate aggregate data.

Conditions of access


To apply for microdata, a data request has to be submitted to the Crossroads Bank for Social Security. The Crossroads Bank then investigates whether this request furthers the ‘knowledge, conception and management of social security’. Subsequently, the Crossroads Bank investigates whether the request is technically and organisationally feasible. The researchers applying for the data are informed about the Crossroads Bank’s decision within two months. In a next step, the Crossroads Bank submits the data request to the Privacy Commission (i.e. Commission for the protection of privacy [Commissie voor de bescherming van de persoonlijke levenssfeer / Commission de la protection de la vie privée]), and more specifically to the subcommittee on Social Security & Health [Comité Sociale Zekerheid and Gezondheid / Comité Sécurité Sociale and Santé], that meets once a month. The Privacy Commission investigates whether the data request is in line with privacy legislation. If the Privacy Commission believes this is so, the data request still has to be authorised by the Crossroad Bank’s Management Committee [Beheerscomité / Comité de Gestion]. In practice, however, this committee follows the Privacy Commission’s advice. Within a month after the decision of the Management Committee, the Crossroads Bank provides a plan with regard to the delivery of the data. Once a contract is set up between the institute requesting the data and the Crossroads Bank, the institute has to notify the Privacy Commission. No fixed prices are available. From our experience, however, we know that most data requests cost between €2,000 and €3,000. If the data are linked to data that are not available in the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection (e.g. survey data or other administrative data such as fiscal data), the data request is substantially more expensive. Aggregate tables using the data from the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection can be generated using online modules available on the Crossroad Bank’s website (cf. supra). These modules can be used freely and without any cost. The website is only available in French or in Dutch.


Anonymised microdata are available for a period of up to 6 months after the application. Aggregate tables using the data from the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection are immediately available.


Anonymised microdata; aggregated tables in online module


SAS, Excel, PDF


Data are available in Dutch and French.

Access to data


The data are available for academic and policy research. Researchers and policy-makers can either use the microdata or online modules to generate aggregate data.

Conditions of access


To apply for microdata, a data request has to be submitted to the Crossroads Bank for Social Security. The Crossroads Bank then investigates whether this request furthers the ‘knowledge, conception and management of social security’. Subsequently, the Crossroads Bank investigates whether the request is technically and organisationally feasible. The researchers applying for the data are informed about the Crossroads Bank’s decision within two months. In a next step, the Crossroads Bank submits the data request to the Privacy Commission (i.e. Commission for the protection of privacy [Commissie voor de bescherming van de persoonlijke levenssfeer / Commission de la protection de la vie privée]), and more specifically to the subcommittee on Social Security & Health [Comité Sociale Zekerheid and Gezondheid / Comité Sécurité Sociale and Santé], that meets once a month. The Privacy Commission investigates whether the data request is in line with privacy legislation. If the Privacy Commission believes this is so, the data request still has to be authorised by the Crossroad Bank’s Management Committee [Beheerscomité / Comité de Gestion]. In practice, however, this committee follows the Privacy Commission’s advice. Within a month after the decision of the Management Committee, the Crossroads Bank provides a plan with regard to the delivery of the data. Once a contract is set up between the institute requesting the data and the Crossroads Bank, the institute has to notify the Privacy Commission. No fixed prices are available. From our experience, however, we know that most data requests cost between €2,000 and €3,000. If the data are linked to data that are not available in the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection (e.g. survey data or other administrative data such as fiscal data), the data request is substantially more expensive. Aggregate tables using the data from the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection can be generated using online modules available on the Crossroad Bank’s website (cf. supra). These modules can be used freely and without any cost. The website is only available in French or in Dutch.


Anonymised microdata are available for a period of up to 6 months after the application. Aggregate tables using the data from the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection are immediately available.


Anonymised microdata; aggregated tables in online module


SAS, Excel, PDF


Data are available in Dutch and French.


Coverage


1980-2012


Data on first pillar pensions and second pillar annuities for employees: 2001; Data on second pillar lump sums for employees: 1980; Data on second pillar pensions for the self-employed: 2010


Population dataset; no sample


Breakdown by region (Flanders, Wallonia, Brussels Capital Region), by province, by municipality and by district.


The total population is covered.


The Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection is the most important dataset to study social systems and welfare in Belgium. To study old age and survivor’s pensions in greater detail , the Pension Register [Pensioenkadaster / Cadastre de Pensions] can be used. The different organisations that manage the first pillar pensions of employees, the self-employed and civil servants have to provide information on pension payments to that dataset. Furthermore, this dataset centralises all pension payments made within the second (occupational, private) pension pillar. An important advantage in this last regard is that all lump sum payments are available in the second pillar. De facto, this makes the Pension Register the only useful database to study second pillar pensions in Belgium.


The following study uses the data from the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection to show how second pillar pensions in Belgium can only be studied using administrative data. • Peeters, H., Verschraegen, G., & Debels, A. “Commensuration and policy comparison: how the use of standardized indicators affects the rankings of pension systems”. Journal of European Social Policy (2014, forthcoming). Other studies that use the data on old age and survivor’s pensions, include: • Berghman, J., & Peeters, H. “Les trois piliers du paysage Belge des pensions de retraite. Aperçu et défis”. Revue Belge de Sécurité Sociale 54(1) (2012): 5-54. • Decoster, A., Orsini, K., & Van Camp, G. “Stop the grief and back to work! An evaluation of the government's plan to activate widows and widowers”. Cahiers économiques de Bruxelles - Brussels Economic Review 49(2) (2006): 121 - 145. For more technical information on the data, see: • Berghman, J., Curvers, G., Palmans, S., & Peeters, H. “Cartographie des retraites Belges. Partie 2: Pensions du premier et du deuxième pilier chez les travailleurs salaries retraites. Working Paper Sécurité Sociale nr. 8. Bruxelles, SPF Sécurité Sociale (2008).

Coverage


1980-2012


Data on first pillar pensions and second pillar annuities for employees: 2001; Data on second pillar lump sums for employees: 1980; Data on second pillar pensions for the self-employed: 2010


Population dataset; no sample


Breakdown by region (Flanders, Wallonia, Brussels Capital Region), by province, by municipality and by district.


The total population is covered.


The Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection is the most important dataset to study social systems and welfare in Belgium. To study old age and survivor’s pensions in greater detail , the Pension Register [Pensioenkadaster / Cadastre de Pensions] can be used. The different organisations that manage the first pillar pensions of employees, the self-employed and civil servants have to provide information on pension payments to that dataset. Furthermore, this dataset centralises all pension payments made within the second (occupational, private) pension pillar. An important advantage in this last regard is that all lump sum payments are available in the second pillar. De facto, this makes the Pension Register the only useful database to study second pillar pensions in Belgium.


The following study uses the data from the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection to show how second pillar pensions in Belgium can only be studied using administrative data. • Peeters, H., Verschraegen, G., & Debels, A. “Commensuration and policy comparison: how the use of standardized indicators affects the rankings of pension systems”. Journal of European Social Policy (2014, forthcoming). Other studies that use the data on old age and survivor’s pensions, include: • Berghman, J., & Peeters, H. “Les trois piliers du paysage Belge des pensions de retraite. Aperçu et défis”. Revue Belge de Sécurité Sociale 54(1) (2012): 5-54. • Decoster, A., Orsini, K., & Van Camp, G. “Stop the grief and back to work! An evaluation of the government's plan to activate widows and widowers”. Cahiers économiques de Bruxelles - Brussels Economic Review 49(2) (2006): 121 - 145. For more technical information on the data, see: • Berghman, J., Curvers, G., Palmans, S., & Peeters, H. “Cartographie des retraites Belges. Partie 2: Pensions du premier et du deuxième pilier chez les travailleurs salaries retraites. Working Paper Sécurité Sociale nr. 8. Bruxelles, SPF Sécurité Sociale (2008).


Linkage


To distinguish countries, the GEONOM nomenclature is used (i.e. Nomenclature of Countries and Territories for the External Trade Statistics of the Community and Statistics of Trade between Member States, developed by Eurostat).


The National Register number is integrated in all administrative datasets. In this way, information available in the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection can be linked to data from the National Register [Rijksregister / Registre National], containing additional information on personal and household characteristics. As many other administrative datasets and survey datasets contain National Register numbers, it becomes possible to link the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection data to several other datasets. In this regard, it is important to notice that the Privacy Commission has stated under what conditions survey data from Statistics Belgium can be linked to the Data Warehouse.

Linkage


To distinguish countries, the GEONOM nomenclature is used (i.e. Nomenclature of Countries and Territories for the External Trade Statistics of the Community and Statistics of Trade between Member States, developed by Eurostat).


The National Register number is integrated in all administrative datasets. In this way, information available in the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection can be linked to data from the National Register [Rijksregister / Registre National], containing additional information on personal and household characteristics. As many other administrative datasets and survey datasets contain National Register numbers, it becomes possible to link the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection data to several other datasets. In this regard, it is important to notice that the Privacy Commission has stated under what conditions survey data from Statistics Belgium can be linked to the Data Warehouse.


Data quality


General information on data quality of DWH LM&SP: Data quality is high. However, given the detail of the information, data cleaning is far from straightforward and requires a thorough understanding of Belgian social security. Given the complexity of the recoding that is needed to make the data available for scientific research, errors can occur. These errors can be adjusted in collaboration with the Crossroads Bank for Social Security. Changes in legislation and registration can impact the content of the variables. Specific information related to the study of old age and survivor’s pensions: Data on third pillar (individual, private) pensions are not available.

Data quality


General information on data quality of DWH LM&SP: Data quality is high. However, given the detail of the information, data cleaning is far from straightforward and requires a thorough understanding of Belgian social security. Given the complexity of the recoding that is needed to make the data available for scientific research, errors can occur. These errors can be adjusted in collaboration with the Crossroads Bank for Social Security. Changes in legislation and registration can impact the content of the variables. Specific information related to the study of old age and survivor’s pensions: Data on third pillar (individual, private) pensions are not available.


Applicability


Strengths: The typical strengths associated with administrative data apply. The use of administrative data is cost-effective, data quality is high, non-response is inexistent, etc. Specifically for life-course researchers, there are several added advantages, such as lack of attrition in between waves, lack of memory bias, etc. Typical for the Belgian situation is that all administrative datasets contain the National Register number and can therefore accurately be linked. Weaknesses: Apart from the typical weaknesses of administrative data (e.g. lack of data on opinions, motivations etc.), the following problems can be mentioned: (1) There is no information on educational levels; (2) Due to an evolution in register systems, the data contain some statistical breaks; (3) Data on personal and household characteristics only become available with a three year time lag; (4) Information on the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection is only available in French and Dutch; (5) Belgian social security is extremely complex. As a consequence, the data that follow from it are also highly technical. This means that it is almost impossible to use the data without thorough and detailed knowledge of the Belgian social security system. We therefore strongly advise foreign researchers to collaborate with Belgian research teams that have experience with the data.

Applicability


Strengths: The typical strengths associated with administrative data apply. The use of administrative data is cost-effective, data quality is high, non-response is inexistent, etc. Specifically for life-course researchers, there are several added advantages, such as lack of attrition in between waves, lack of memory bias, etc. Typical for the Belgian situation is that all administrative datasets contain the National Register number and can therefore accurately be linked. Weaknesses Apart from the typical weaknesses of administrative data (e.g. lack of data on opinions, motivations etc.), the following problems can be mentioned: (1) There is no information on educational levels; (2) Due to an evolution in register systems, the data contain some statistical breaks; (3) Data on personal and household characteristics only become available with a three year time lag; (4) Information on the Data Warehouse Labour Market and Social Protection is only available in French and Dutch; (5) Belgian social security is extremely complex. As a consequence, the data that follow from it are also highly technical. This means that it is almost impossible to use the data without thorough and detailed knowledge of the Belgian social security system. We therefore strongly advise foreign researchers to collaborate with Belgian research teams that have experience with the data.


  • The information about this dataset was compiled by the author:
  • Hans Peeters
  • (see Partners)