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Suggested Citation:"INTRODUCTION." National Research Council. 1991. Improving Information for Social Policy Decisions -- The Uses of Microsimulation Modeling: Volume II, Technical Papers. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/1853.
Page 89

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ALTERNATIVE MODEL DESIGNS: PROGRAM PARTICIPATION FUNCTIONS AND THE ALLOCATION OF ANNUAL TO 89 MONTHLY VALUES IN TRIM2, MATH, AND HITSM 3 Alternative Model Designs: Program Participation Functions and the Allocation of Annual to Monthly Values in TRIM2, MATH, and HITSM Constance F.Citro and Christine M.Ross INTRODUCTION The Transfer Income Model 2 (TRIM2) and the Micro Analysis of Transfers to Households (MATH) model are two microsimulation models that are heavily used for analysis of proposed changes to government tax and transfer programs. The Household Income and Tax Simulation Model (HITSM) is another static microsimulation model that has been used for policy analysis in the income support and tax areas. All three models fall into the class of “static” microsimulation models—that is, models that operate on a cross-sectional basis and make projections to future years using procedures for reweighting, or “aging,” their database to match outside projections of selected characteristics such as the demographic and labor force composition of the population.1 (In contrast, dynamic models apply transition probabilities for events such as birth, death, job change, and others to the records in their database, thereby “growing” their population year by year into the future; see Ross in this volume.) Constance F.Citro is a staff officer at the National Research Council; she served as study director of the Panel to Evaluate Microsimulation Models for Social Welfare Programs. Christine M.Ross is on the staff of Mathematica Policy Research, Inc.; she served as research associate of the panel. 1At present, users of TRIM2 do not normally invoke the model's static aging routines but instead apply out-of-model adjustments to project TRIM2 results obtained from the most recently available database.

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This volume, second in the series, provides essential background material for policy analysts, researchers, statisticians, and others interested in the application of microsimulation techniques to develop estimates of the costs and population impacts of proposed changes in government policies ranging from welfare to retirement income to health care to taxes.

The material spans data inputs to models, design and computer implementation of models, validation of model outputs, and model documentation.

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