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Issues of military spouses in the labor market are critical ones for retention of military members. As part of the continuing research on the quality of life of military families, the Department of Defense asked RAND researchers to help develop reliable employment statistics for military spouses that would address inadequacies of traditional Bureau of Labor Statistics measures, which may not represent the impact of military life on military spouses’ employment conditions. We determined (1) valid measures of labor market conditions for military spouses and (2) the sufficient sample size to allow generalization to the population of military spouses.

Table of Contents

  • Chapter One

    The Need for Data on Military Spouses

  • Chapter Two

    Measures of Employment Conditions

  • Chapter Three

    Adequacy of the CPS Sample

  • Chapter Four

    Conclusions and Recommendations

  • Appendix A

    Current Population Survey (CPS) Education and Employment Questions

  • Appendix B

    Power Analysis

The research described in this report was prepared for the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD). The research was conducted in the RAND National Defense Research Institute, a federally funded research and development center sponsored by the OSD, the Joint Staff, the Unified Combatant Commands, the Department of the Navy, the Marine Corps, the defense agencies, and the defense Intelligence Community.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Technical report series. RAND technical reports may include research findings on a specific topic that is limited in scope or intended for a narrow audience; present discussions of the methodology employed in research; provide literature reviews, survey instruments, modeling exercises, guidelines for practitioners and research professionals, and supporting documentation; or deliver preliminary findings. All RAND reports undergo rigorous peer review to ensure that they meet high standards for research quality and objectivity.

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