Persons with disabilities, Labour force survey

Updated: 22 February 2022

Next update: Not yet determined

Employed persons with disabilities
Employed persons with disabilities
Persons with disabilities and the rest of the population aged 15-66 by labour force status. 1 000 and per cent
Persons with disabilities and the rest of the population aged 15-66 by labour force status. 1 000 and per cent
Persons (1 000 persons)Persons (per cent of total group)
Persons with disabilitiesOthersPersons with disabilitiesOthers
Persons, total2883 314100.0100.0
Employed persons1082 59837.578.4
Persons outside of the labour force17459660.318.0
Explanation of symbols

About the statistics

Based on yearly ad hoc modules to the Labour force survey on persons with disabilities, we achive data on their situation at the labour market compared with the whole population. The statistics also give information on changes over time for this group.

Concepts and definitions are in accordance with recommendations given by the International Labour Organization (ILO) and EU/Eurostat.

According to the international recommendations persons above a specified age should be classified by their attachment to the labour market in a specified, short period, either a day or a week. In the Norwegian LFS the reference period is one week, and the sample of persons are classified in relation to their situation in that reference week.

Employed persons are persons aged 15-74 who performed work for pay or profit for at least one hour in the reference week, or who were temporarily absent from work because of illness, holidays etc. Conscripts are classified as employed persons. Persons engaged by government measures to promote employment are also included if they receive wages.

Unemployed persons are persons who were not employed in the reference week, but who had been seeking work during the preceding four weeks, and were available for work in the reference week or within the next two weeks.

Persons in the labour force are either employed or unemployed. The remaining group of persons is labelled not in the labour force . Man-hours worked include all actual working hours, i.e. including overtime and excluding absence from work.

Contractual/usual working hours refer to the weekly number of working hours determined by the working contract. Absence from work because of illness, holidays etc. is not subtracted, and overtime is not included. Employees, whose contractual working hours vary from week to week, give information on both the actual reference week as well as the average of their contractual working hours per week (in the tables published the average numbers are normally used). For employees without contract on working hours, for self-employed and for unpaid family workers, data on their usual weekly working hours are used (as an average of their actual working hours during the last 4 weeks).

Full-time/part-time distinction is based on the contractual/usual working hours. Part-time: 1-36 hours, with exception of persons with 32-36 hours who classify themselves as full-time employed.

Full-time: 37 hours and over, and the cases mentioned above. For persons with more jobs, the working hours in the main and the second job are summarized.

Involuntary part-time employment comprises part-time employed persons seeking longer contractual/usual working hours by registering at the Employment Offices, advertising, contacting present employer etc., and who were able to start with increased working hours within a month.

Permanence of the job

The employees are asked whether they have a permanent job (a work contract of unlimited duration) or a temporary job (a work contract of limited duration). If the person has more than one job, only the main job is classified by permanence.

There is two kind of working arrangements/working hours outside ordinary daytime.

  • Shift work is usually understood as working time outside normally working hours, and what counts in the survey as shift work, is based on the evaluation of the respondent. Up to 2006 it was distinguished between regular and not regular shift work, and figures only on regular shift work were published. As from 2006 onwards there is no longer such a distinction.
  • Working hour arrangements , not shift work . Work at evening is defined as working hours between 6-10 PM, working at night between 10 PM and 6 AM. Working hours outside ordinary daytime is divided into regular pattern and not regular.

Working hour arrangements outside ordinary daytime is based on the contract for the employees, and on usual working time pattern for the self-employed. Up to 2006 these questions were included in the survey only during the 2nd quarter each year. As from 2006 onwards they are included each quarter, but only for one quarter of the sample.

Course participation refers to job related courses which the respondent was paid to attend. Only courses received during a period of four weeks are included. Up to 2006 these questions were asked only during the 2nd quarter each year. As from 2006 onwards they are included each quarter to the whole sample.

As from 2006 the definition of age was changed from completed years at the end of the year to completed years at the time of the reference week.

The persons are classified by marital status as unmarried, married and previously married according to information given by the respondents. Previously married includes widows, widowers, separated and divorced persons. In the tables married women include cohabitants.

The industrial classification is in accordance with the Standard Industrial Classification (NOS D 383), which is based on the EU-standard of NACE Rev. 2.

The occupational classification is in accordance with Standard Classification of Occupations (NOS C521), which is based on ISCO 88 (COM).

The educational classification is in accordance with the Norwegian Standard Classification of Education (NOS C617).

Navn: Persons with disabilities, Labour force survey

Emne: Labour market and wage

Not yet determined

Division for Labour Market and Wage Statistics

The whole country.

Annual, based on additional questions (ad hoc modules) to the Labour Force Survey (LFS) in the 2nd quarter.

Not relevant.

The basic material (survey results from the interviewers) as well as the statistical files (on the basis of revision and estimation procedures) are stored.

The purpose of the ad hoc module to the LFS on persons with disabilities is to achieve data on their situation at the labour market compared with the whole population. The ad hoc modules have been carried out yearly since 2002.

The main purpose of the LFS is to provide data on employment and unemployment, and data on the labour force participation in different sections of the population. The Norwegian LFS started in 1972. For information about the history of the survey, and about breaks in the time-series, please cf. Labour Force Survey 2001 (NOS C748).

In the following the LFS in general will also be described, as the LFS is the basis for the ad hoc modules on persons with disabilities.

The surveys give information to the Labour Market Authorities and other users about the situation on the labour market especially for persons with disabilities. Since 2001 there has been a Cooperation Agreement beteen the authorities and the employer/employee organizations regarding a more inclusive working life.

No external users have access to the statistics and analyses before they are published and accessible simultaneously for all users on at 08.00 am. Prior to this, a minimum of three months' advance notice is given inthe Statistics Release Calendar. This is one of Statistics Norway’s key principles for ensuring that all users are treated equally.

The results from the LFS are used in the National Accounts Statistics.

For statistics at regional levels (counties and municipalities), the Registerbased Employment Statistics are recommended. These statistics also give figures on employees who are immigrants.

Statistics on unemployed persons at the Employment Offices and government measures to promote employment are compiled by NAV on the basis of registers of unemployed persons and applicants for work.

The figures on unemployment based on the LFS differ from the figures on unemployed persons registered at the Employment Offices. The LFS-figures also include unemployed persons not registered at the Employment Offices, some of the participants in government measures to promote employment and some of the disabled persons. On the other hand, some of the registered unemployed are not classified as unemployed in the LFS, on the basis of the information given on seeking and availability for work.As from 2006 persons on lay-off (until 3 months) are no longer classified as unemployed, but as employed persons (temporarily absent from work) in the LFS, while they still are classified as unemployed in the registerbased statistics. However, if the period of lay-off exceeds 3 months, they are classified as unemployed in the LFS as well.

The Surveys of Level of Living (by Statistics Norway) give information on physical working environment as well as organizational working conditions.

The Statistics Act §§ 2-2 and 2-3.

Council Regulation (EC) nos 577/98, 1991/2002 and 2257/2003, and Commission Regulation nos 1575/2000, 1897/2000, 2104/2002, 430/2005 and 377/2008.

The total population aged 15-74 is covered by the LFS. Up to 2006 the group was 16-74, and age defined as completed years at the end of the year. As from 2006 age is defined as completed years at the time of the reference week. Observation unit: person. The ad hoc modules on persons with disabilities are limited to the age group 15-66.

The main source for the LFS is quarterly, representative sample surveys based on interview by telephone.

Inhabitants in all municipalities are randomly selected, on the basis of a register of family units. The sample consists of about 12 000 family units (24 000 persons) each quarter. Each family member aged 15-74 participates in the survey, answering questions about their situation during a specified reference week. As from 1996 each family participates in the survey 8 times during a period of 8 quarters (before 1996: 4 times during 6 quarters).

Interview by telephone. Information from previous interviews are used while asking about any changes in the situation, instead of the same, comprehensive data collection every time. For the coding of industry, information from some registers is also used. Demographic data are collected from the Central Population Register, and data on education are based on a register of individual data collected by Statistics Norway from the educational institutions (but questions are also asked to get more updated information).

The respondent is usually the same person as the observation unit (but proxy interviews are done if it is not possible to get in contact with the observation unit; 14-15 per cent of the interviews are done by asking near family members). Data are collected weekly, i.e. the LFS is a continuous survey (all weeks are covered).

Participation in the survey is compulsory, but compulsory fines are not used.

As the data collection is made by use of computer-assisted interviews, some procedures for electronic control of the registration of answers are included in the questionnaire, for example concerning the number of working hours during the reference week. In some cases the interviewers become a "warning" by recording an answer, in other cases maximum or minimum values have been set beforehand.

The analysis unit is person. The absolute numbers from the LFS are presented in the form of estimated total for the entire population aged 15-74. The weights or inflation factors vary, but have an average of about 195 for quarterly figures in 2017.

The estimation method uses more demographic data and register information relevant to the connection to the labour market in order to minimize standard errors and correct more for bias in the response sample in LFS since the nonresponse is not random. New method was launched in April 2018, is also used on LFS data back to 2006 to get the most comparable time series.

The estimation method in LFS is done in several stages, and are called multiple model calibration (MMK). Initially, the main labor market status of LFS, which is employed, unemployed, outside the workforce, are modeled consistent with a multinomial logit model, explained with a number of register variables known to all in the population. The register information are registered completely unemployed, on measures and persons with disabilities at NAV, register information on disability pensioners, education level, marital status, family size and immigrant category, country of origin, gender and age, residence, and information from the A scheme and the Tax Recovery Register. The model provides predictive probabilities every month for each main labor market status in LFS for everybody in the population.

The monthly weights in LFS are calibrated using these predicted probabilities and some register variables directly[1]. This means that the weights also become consistent with the population for the number in the population register by gender, different age groups and region, as well as consistent weights for the number of full / part-time wage earners by gender and registered employed (yes/no) cross classified by immigrants in 2 groups.

Multiple model calibration provides some variance reduction, utilizing more efficiently that we have available good help information about everyone in the population from various registries that Statistics Norway has linked.

The initial weights before calibration are the ratio of the number of people in the population to the gross sample per. county (NUTS3), and takes into account that people in different counties have different probabilities of being selected to LFS sample.

For more detailed technical information about the new estimation method, please see Documents 2018/16 []

Week-proportional weighting of the months in quarterly averages

LFS have continuous data collection. In order for all reference weeks to weighted evenly in quarterly averages, we now make week-proportional adjustment of monthly weights in our quarterly averages. That is, the monthly weights are multiplied by 4/13 or 5/13 depending on whether the months in the LFS contain respectively 4 or 5 whole weeks. Weekly proportional weighting of quarterly average has been made on all quarterly figures in our StatBank back to 2006. Before that is the even adjustment off all monthly weights was used, i.e. multiplied by 1/3 for all months.

[1]That the weights are consistent for a register variable, such as gender, means that the sum of the weights in the responses in the LFS equals the number of the population for each category of the register variable, such as the number of men and the number of women in the population

Not relevant

Not relevant

New estimation method published in April 2018 uses more registers that will reduce nonresponse bias and sample uncertainty. This leads to a slightly lower level of employed and almost correspondingly higher levels for people outside the workforce than the previous method. The total number of unemployed changes only a little. To get the most comparable figures, the time series are revised back to 2006 in our StatBank. However, the adjustments vary slightly between groups and over time.

Breaks in the series up to 2001 are described in the publication Labour Force Survey 2001 (NOS C748).

The concepts in LFS are defined in accordance with international recommendations, cf item 4.1, to ensure comparability among the countries.

As from 2006 the LFS was revised, mainly to be in accordance with the EU-requirements based on new ILO recommendations. Some definitions and parts of the questionnaire were changed, and some new variables were added. As from 2006 age is defined as completed years at the time of the reference week, instead of completed years at the end of the year, as earlier. Moreover the lower age limit to be covered by the survey was lowered from 16 to 15, in accordance with the surveys in other countries.

These changes from 2006 led to breaks in the time-series for the LFS estimates. The revised survey gives some lower estimates for unemployment (1 000 persons as an annual average for 2006) and some higher estimates for employment (8 000 in 2006). A break in the time series also occured for the estimates of actual working hours per week and man-hours worked. For more information, please cf. Quarterly data for 2006 are published according to both the revised and the unrevised LFS, in order to improve the comparability for the figures between 2006 and 2005. The breaks in the time-series were most significant for figures divided by age groups.

In all surveys errors may occur in connection with both the collection and the processing of data. The use of proxy interviews (asking near family members instead of the observation unit) often increase the problems of measurement. As an average the employment is underestimated because of proxy interviews.

The size of the nonresponse as a percentage of the gross sample has varied widely since the LFS began in 1972. The 20 first years were generally around 10-12 percent. In the years 1992-1997 it was particularly low, only 6-8 percent. Subsequently, the nonresponse rate gradually increased to 21 per cent in 2013. After systematic work, the nonresponse has been reduced to around 16 per cent in 2017.

Correction for total non-response is done in the estimating procedure. Partial non-response is adjusted for some variables.


The estimates from the LFS are based on a sample of family units. Somewhat different results might have been obtained if a different sample or if a complete census had been taken using the same questionnaires, interviewers, processing, etc. as those actually used in the LFS. The uncertainty introduced by sampling is called the standard error of the estimates.

If the reader wants an indication of the size of the standard deviation for quarterly figures from the ad hoc modules to the LFS on persons with disabilities, see the table below. Changes between two surveys will usually have the same absolute uncertainty as the two figures which are compared.

Size of standard error

Estimated value

Absolute figures

As per cent of estimated value

5 000

1 100


7 000

1 200


10 000

1 500


20 000

2 200


30 000

2 600


40 000

3 000


50 000

3 500


60 000

3 700


70 000

4 000


100 000

4 900


200 000

6 700


300 000

8 100


400 000

9 200


500 000

10 000


1 000 000

12 700


1 700 000

13 400


2 000 000

12 700


Not relevant


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