European Community
Household Panel Study

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In this section you will find:

An Introduction to the ECHP
The ECHP is a harmonised cross-national longitudinal survey focusing on household income and living conditions. It also includes items on health, education, housing, migration, demographics and employment characteristics.
Three central features of the ECHP make it a uniquely valuable resource for researchers.

  • The multidimensional character of the topics covered
  • The cross-national comparability of the data
  • The longitudinal dimension

The survey runs from 1994 to 2001. In the first wave (1994) a sample of over 60,000 households were interviewed across 12 member states (Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Spain, France, Italy, Ireland, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Portugal, the United-Kingdom). Austria joined the panel in 1995 and Finland joined 1996. From 1997 Sweden provides cross-sectional data derived from its National Survey on Living conditions.

Table 1: Years original ECHP format and converted national data

Full ECHP Data Format
ECHP Data FormatDerived from National Surveys
Belgium, Denmark,France, Greece, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal 1994-2001

Austria 1995-2001
Finland 1996-2001
Germany 1994-1996
1994-2001 (SOEP)
Luxembourg 1994-1996
1997-2001 (PSELL)
United-Kingdom 1994-1996
1994-2001 (BHPS)
Sweden -
1997-2001 (SLCS)

The User Guide
To view the user guide, you can either open it online or view it as a pdf document. Opening it online is useful because you can refer to certain points whilst using this web site. However, we have made a pdf version available so that you can save it to your computer and view it at your leisure.

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Panel Documentation
Below is a list of the PanDocs. Some are available in pdf format, for you to save to your computer. All can be linked to from this page (see the table below). It will also be possible to download them, where available. The 'Other Documents' button takes you to a list of other ECHP-relevant documents.

View other relevant documents       Back to the top


Document Name
Description of the content
The variable list and codebook for the household and personal register records as well as for the household and personal questionnaire records for Wave 1 (1994).
PAN 30
As above but for wave 2 (1995)
PAN 65
As above but for wave 3 (1996)
PAN 81
As above but for wave 4 (1997)
PAN 97
As above but for wave 5 (1998)
PAN 112
As above but for wave 6 (1999)
PAN 151
As above but for wave 7 (2000)
PAN 159
As above but for wave 8 (2001)
PAN 165
Describes the weighting procedure that has been implemented for calculating individuals and households weights without describing however how these weights have to be used

PAN 166
Describes the variables (data dictionary, code book, and differences between countries and waves). The document is divided between the Household file and the Personal file, themselves divided into categories such as General Information, Demographic, Income and so on.
PAN 167
Describes the conversion of the variables from the PDB questions to the UDB variable format for the household file, personal file as well as link fixed variables and link wave specific variables (household and personal)
PAN 168
Presents the ECHP history as well as describing the dataset (the various files), the contractual arrangements and the related documents (Doc PAN 164, PAN 165 etc…) and the contacts for the National Data Collection Units and Eurostat


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