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The Monthly Labor Review (MLR) is the premier publication of the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). It showcases the power of statistics for understanding economic and social phenomena. Since 1915, BLS staff, state and federal economists, academics, and researchers have conducted highly relevant, thought-provoking research on a wide range of topics, including employment, productivity, occupational injuries and illnesses, inflation, and much more.
I am delighted to launch a yearlong celebration in honor of the MLR’s 100th anniversary. Beginning today through June 2016, each month the MLR will feature articles from BLS authors and “visioning essays” from prominent officials in the public and private sector. Our distinguished contributors—from CEOs to academics and labor union presidents—will give their view of the world 25 years into the future. All told, more than 40 articles and essays will be published over the course of the year to commemorate this milestone.
Looking back over the past 100 years of the MLR, I notice one constant—the special bond this agency has with the American people. During this time, the MLR has evolved, our economy has fluctuated, and our methodology and research methods have advanced, but the public’s trust in BLS has consistently been the mainstay of our work.
For more than a century, the public has safely entrusted us with key information. BLS, in turn, has delivered back the gold-standard data needed to guide the decisions of families, communities, and businesses. Without the voluntary participation of individuals, households, and organizations, BLS surveys wouldn’t accurately reflect economic conditions. Every time a firm or a household responds to a BLS survey, it performs an essential public service that benefits all of us.
Knowing that the data we produce depend so crucially on the support of the American people, we do not take lightly our responsibilities to protect respondent confidentiality and to produce statistics based on transparent methods that adhere to the highest professional standards. The fruit of this special relationship is readily apparent in the MLR, which takes BLS statistical products one step further, turning them into analytical stories that respond to a wide variety of current interests.
I also want to thank the MLR staff and contributors. They have made it possible for the MLR to maintain its century-long status as the flagship research journal for economists, statisticians, labor relations practitioners, and other professionals concerned with the condition of the American economy. You, the reader, have also played a vital role in helping the MLR get to this landmark 100th anniversary. Thank you for reading, for providing feedback, and for helping us shine a spotlight on national statistics and on how important good data are for businesses and families.
As the next 100 years unfold, and changes in how we measure and track our nation’s economy continue to be detailed in the MLR, I am confident that one constant will remain—the American public’s trust and participation in our work. So, on this anniversary, let me say a special thanks to all our respondents. You have made all this possible.
Erica L. Groshen, "Celebrating 100 years of the Monthly Labor Review," Monthly Labor Review, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, July 2015, https://doi.org/10.21916/mlr.2015.20