I'm currently in the Research Analyst program and I am currently working on a research project. My project is on basic income and I'm hoping to use Statistics Canada's SPSD/M product to simulate a basic income program and see how it would affect low income populations. I've read the user manual and I am still very lost. Do you have any experience with it or do you know if there are additional training materials? Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Our user-guide is a comprehensive document which describes all facilities included in our SPSM application. I am providing a roadmap here regarding some important/essential facilities which might be useful for this student’s project.
- The SPSM contains rich build-in variables already which can be directly used by our researchers. However, our users are also able to create user-defined variables. For example, based on the description provided in the email, the student might want to create a low-income flag in the SPSM when doing the simulation, and he/she can use the “User-defined Variables” facility to do so. In terms of how to access and use that facility, please see the section called “User-defined Variables Facility” on the user-guide for more details.
- There are two default tables created in the SPSM after each simulation (i.e., total expenses in Canada and by province). However, our researchers can also create their own tables based on the purposes of the projects. One of the example which might be relevant to this student’s project is looking at the expenses of this basic income program by people’s demographic characteristics (i.e., gender, age group, and education levels). “User-specified Tabulation facility” is the one to create these additional tables. Please see the section called “Specification of User-defined Tabulations” on the user-guide for more details.
- Another useful facility is “Record selection facility” which can facilitate researchers to select a subsample in the SPSM. For instance, if users would like to do the simulation only among a specific group (i.e., people not working), then this is the one to use. Please see the section called “Selection Facility” on the user-guide for more details.
- Researchers are also able to output microdata from the SPSM to see how the data or variables look like. Please see the section named “Test output facility” for more details.
- Generally speaking, whenever a researcher start a new simulation in the SPSM, he/she need to choose a base year, variant scenario (can choose both base and variant scenarios if would like to compare the changes due to the policy, please see section called ”variant and base” for more details) in a small pop-up window. Then the researcher will be able to see the SPSM interface and access to those facilities mentioned above. Once the user-defined variables or/and tables are specified, the researcher can save the simulation and click the “execute” button on the left top to run the simulation. Finally, the default and user-specified tables will been output when the simulation is done.
- If the user have also specified the “Test output facility”, then he/she can click “View” on the left top and then “microdata” to output the data.