2017 Annual Survey of Refugees

Resource Type
Dataset : survey data
  • Urban Institute
Publication Date
Funding Reference
  • U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
Free Keywords
  • Abstract

    Since the 1980s, the Office of Refugee Resettlement[1] (ORR) has conducted the Annual Survey of Refugees (ASR), which collects information on refugees during their first five years after arrival in the U.S. The ASR is the only scientifically-collected source of national data on refugees’ progress toward self-sufficiency and integration. ORR uses the ASR results alongside other information sources to fulfill its Congressionally-mandated reporting requirement following the Refugee Act of 1980.

    In the spring of 2018, ORR completed its 51st Annual Survey of Refugees (ASR). The data from the ASR offer a window into respondents’ first five years in the United States and show the progress that refugee families made towards learning English, participating in the workforce, and establishing permanent residence. This public use data deposit is only for the 2017 ASR with future years likely to be added to the ICPSR archive. .
    [1] The Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) at the Administration for Children and Families in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) serves refugees and other humanitarian entrants, including asylees, Cuban and Haitian entrants, Special Immigrant Visa holders, Amerasians, victims of human trafficking, and unaccompanied children. By providing these arrived populations with critical resources, ORR promotes their economic and social well-being. Of these populations, the Annual Survey of Refugees focuses solely on refugees who have come to the U.S. in the past five fiscal years.
  • Weighting

    Household- and person-level analytic weights were developed for the 2017 ASR to allow for valid statistical estimates of the target refugee population. Both sets of weights are comprised of two components – a base weight reflecting the selection probability and an adjustment that corrects for differential nonresponse and aligns the population to known totals from the sampling frame (RADS universe file).
  • Technical Information

    Response Rates: An overall response rate of 25 percent was achieved. The response rate was driven by the ability to locate and speak to (1515+534)/6006 = 32 percent of the sample, meaning that two thirds of the sample could neither be located nor (if located) successfully contacted.

    The overall response rates decreased with time since arrival to the U.S., varying from 18 percent for FY 2012-13 refugees to 26 percent for FY 2014-15 refugees and a high of 34 percent for FY 2016 refugees.
Temporal Coverage
  • 2018-01-10 / 2018-04-07
    Time Period: Wed Jan 10 00:00:00 EST 2018--Sat Apr 07 00:00:00 EDT 2018 (Collected 2017 information)
  • 2018-01-10 / 2018-04-07
    Collection Date(s): Wed Jan 10 00:00:00 EST 2018--Sat Apr 07 00:00:00 EDT 2018
Geographic Coverage
  • United States
Sampled Universe
Refugees aged 16 years old or older at the time of interview and arrived in the U.S. during FY 2012-2016. Smallest Geographic Unit: Census region originally resettled in and the country of birth
The 2017 ASR employed a stratified probability sample design of refugees. The first stage of selection was the household (PA) and the second stage was the selection of persons within households. Principal features of the sample design are highlighted below.
Collection Mode
  • telephone interview;

  • “Office of Refugee Resettlement Annual Report to Congress 2017,” n.d.

Update Metadata: 2020-05-20 | Issue Number: 2 | Registration Date: 2020-02-14