This web site was copied prior to January 20, 2005. It is now a Federal record managed by the National Archives and Records Administration. External links, forms, and search boxes may not function within this collection. Learn more.   [hide]

What is SESTAT?

SESTAT is a comprehensive and integrated system of information about the employment, educational, and demographic characteristics of scientists and engineers (S&E) in the United States. In concept it covers those with a bachelor's degree or higher who either work in or are educated in science or engineering, although some data on the non-S&E are also included.

SESTAT was created by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to provide data for policy analysis and general research. Maintained by the Division of Science Resource Studies within the NSF, SESTAT contains data from three NSF-sponsored demographic surveys. These surveys were conducted in 1993, 1995, 1997 and 1999. These surveys provide data that have been integrated into a single system. The 1993 surveys include responses from about 200,000 individuals representing an S&E population of 11.6 million. The 1995 surveys include responses from about 105,000 individuals, representing 12.0 million scientists and engineers. The 1997 surveys include responses from about 100,000 individuals representing 12.6 million scientists and engineers. The 1999 surveys include responses from about 87,000 individuals representing 13.1 million scientists and engineers. The 1993 National Survey of College Graduates was a once-a-decade baseline survey in that it also covered the non-S&E population with a bachelor's or higher degree -- about 29 million people.

SESTAT data is available on the Web and on CDs. The SESTAT web version includes prepared tables and a feature for the user to define their own table. Extensive documentation is available for each variable. The SESTAT CDs allow cross-sectional, timeseries and longitudinal analysis with data formats in SAS or flat file.

SESTAT is now in a period of growth and development, in which its content and software features are being expanded. The current system reflects a thorough redesign of previous NSF data collection and dissemination efforts. This redesign has affected definitions, probability sampling, question and instrument design, methods of data collection, and all other aspects of the surveys. For this reason, the SESTAT data are not comparable with NSF data on scientists and engineers prior to 1993.

Technical Information Click here for technical information on sampling, survey design, and other data collection activities.

Types of Data Available

SESTAT contains the following types of count and characteristics data for scientists and engineers:

Labor Force Information

For the employed:

For the unemployed and those not in the labor force:

Other Work-Related Information

Labor Force Status: Five Years Ago

Professional Activities:


Other Information



More on SESTAT Data Click here to explore in more detail the types of information currently available in SESTAT. 

Accessing SESTAT

SESTAT is accessed through the world wide web (WWW) using the Netscape (HTML3) or compatible browser.

The SESTAT software will allow you to:

These data are also available in public use CD format. To request a CD, please email to

Confidentiality of the Data

The National Science Foundation pledges confidentiality to each survey respondent. SESTAT protects respondent confidentiality through a variety of electronic and other means. For this reason, not all data collected in SESTAT is available in public use form.

Contact Information

For more information about SESTAT, explore the rest of the SESTAT Home Page. You will find information about SESTAT data collection and processing methodologies, SESTAT publications, and answers to questions frequently asked about SESTAT. The Home Page also lists who to contact for additional information.

Updated: May 14, 2002