The ILO has made an intensive effort to assemble data on labour market indicators for as many countries, areas and territories as possible. Where there is no information for a country, it is usually because the country involved was not in a position to provide information for the indicator. Even when information for an indicator was available, it may not have been sufficiently current or may not have met other qualifications established for inclusion in the Key Indicators of the Labour Market (KILM), on which the information for working poverty is based.
In compiling the KILM, the ILO concentrates on bringing together information from international repositories. In other words, the KILM team rarely collects information directly from national sources, but rather takes advantage of existing compilations held by various organizations, such as the following:
International Labour Office (Bureau of Statistics)
United Nations Statistics Division
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)
Statistical Office of the European Union (EUROSTAT)
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)
Information maintained by these organizations has generally been obtained from national sources or is based on official national publications.
Whenever information was available from more than one repository, the information and background documentation from each repository was reviewed in order to select the information most suitable for inclusion, based on an assessment of the general reliability of the sources, the availability of methodological information and explanatory notes regarding the scope of coverage, the availability of information by sex and age, and the degree of historical coverage. Occasionally, two data repositories have been chosen and presented for a single country; any resulting breaks in the historical series are duly noted.
For countries with less-developed labour market information systems, such as those in the developing economies, information may not be easily available to policy-makers and the social partners, and even less so to international organizations seeking to compile global data sets. Many of these countries, however, do collect labour market information through household and establishment surveys, population censuses and administrative records, so that the main problem remains the communication of such information to the global community. In this situation, the ILO Labour Market Indicators Library (LMIL) programme is used. The LMIL is a system for sharing information between the ILO regional offices and headquarters. ILO regional offices are closer to the original micro-sources of data and have therefore been successful in filling in numerous gaps where data at headquarters – used in the production of the KILM – had not existed. It is an ongoing programme that continues to assist the KILM and other ILO publications and research programmes in the expansion of its country and yearly coverage of indicators.