As part of its strategic goal of building a climate for investment, job creation, and sustainable growth, the World Bank has promoted improving business environments as a key strategy for development, which has led to a systematic effort in collecting enterprise data across countries. The Enterprise Surveys are an ongoing World Bank project in collecting both objective data based on firms' experiences and enterprises' perception of the environment in which they operate.
An Enterprise Survey is a firm-level survey of a representative sample of an economy's private sector. Firm-level surveys have been conducted since 1998 by different units within the World Bank. Since 2005-2006, most data collection efforts have been centralized within the Enterprise Analysis Unit. The Enterprise Surveys are conducted across all geographic regions and cover small, medium, and large companies. The surveys are administered to a representative sample of firms in the non-agricultural formal private economy. Data is used to create indicators that benchmark the quality of the business and investment climate across countries.
The documented dataset covers Enterprise Survey (ES) panel data collected in Zambia in 2007 and 2013, as part of Africa Enterprise Surveys roll-out, an initiative of the World Bank.
Zambia ES 2013 was conducted between December 2012 and February 2014, Zambia ES 2007 was carried out in October and November 2007. The objective of the Enterprise Survey is to obtain feedback from enterprises on the state of the private sector as well as to help in building a panel of enterprise data that will make it possible to track changes in the business environment over time, thus allowing, for example, impact assessments of reforms. Through interviews with firms in the manufacturing and services sectors, the survey assesses the constraints to private sector growth and creates statistically significant business environment indicators that are comparable across countries.
Stratified random sampling was used to select the surveyed businesses. The data was collected using face-to-face interviews.
Data from 1,204 establishments was analyzed: 568 businesses were from 2013 ES only, 332 - from 2007 ES only, and 304 firms were from both 2007 and 2013 panels.
The standard Enterprise Survey topics include firm characteristics, gender participation, access to finance, annual sales, costs of inputs and labor, workforce composition, bribery, licensing, infrastructure, trade, crime, competition, capacity utilization, land and permits, taxation, informality, business-government relations, innovation and technology, and performance measures. Over 90 percent of the questions objectively measure characteristics of a country’s business environment. The remaining questions assess the survey respondents’ opinions on what are the obstacles to firm growth and performance.
Kind of Data
Sample survey data [ssd]
Unit of Analysis
The primary sampling unit of the study is an establishment. An establishment is a physical location where business is carried out and where industrial operations take place or services are provided. A firm may be composed of one or more establishments. For example, a brewery may have several bottling plants and several establishments for distribution. For the purposes of this survey an establishment must make its own financial decisions and have its own financial statements separate from those of the firm. An establishment must also have its own management and control over its payroll.
v02 (August 2015)
- Variables documenting sampling region (a2, a3a, a3b, a3c) and sampling industry (a4a, a4b) were updated.
v01 (May 2014)
The scope of the study includes:
- characteristics of establishment;
- infrastructure and services;
- sales and supplies;
- degree of competition;
- land and permits;
- business-government relations;
- business environment;
- HIV, AIDS
Regions covered are selected based on the number of establishments, contribution to employment, and value added. In most cases these regions are metropolitan areas and reflect the largest centers of economic activity in a country.
The whole population, or the universe, covered in the Enterprise Surveys is the non-agricultural private economy. It comprises: all manufacturing sectors according to the ISIC Revision 3.1 group classification (group D), construction sector (group F), services sector (groups G and H), and transport, storage, and communications sector (group I). Note that this population definition excludes the following sectors: financial intermediation (group J), real estate and renting activities (group K, except sub-sector 72, IT, which was added to the population under study), and all public or utilities sectors. Companies with 100% government ownership are not eligible to participate in the Enterprise Surveys.
Producers and sponsors
2013 ES implementation
Etude Economique Conseil (EEC Canada)
2007 ES implementation
The sample for Zambia ES 2013 was selected using stratified random sampling. Three levels of stratification were used in this country: firm sector, firm size, and geographic region.
Industry stratification was designed in the way that follows: the universe was stratified into four manufacturing industries (food, textiles and garments, chemicals and plastics, other manufacturing) and two service sectors (retail and other services).
Size stratification was defined following the standardized definition for the Enterprise Surveys: small (5 to 19 employees), medium (20 to 99 employees), and large (more than 99 employees).
Regional stratification for the Zambia ES was defined in five regions: Kitwe, Livingstone, Lusaka, and Ndola.
One of the sampling frames for Zambia ES 2013 consisted of enterprises interviewed in Zambia 2007. The World Bank required that attempts should be made to re-interview establishments responding to the Zambia 2007 survey where they were within the selected geographical regions and met eligibility criteria. Due to the fact that the previous round of surveys seemed to have utilized different stratification criteria (or no stratification at all) and due to the prevalence of small firms and firms located in the capital city in the 2007 sample the following convention was used. The presence of panel firms was limited to a maximum of 50% of the achieved interviews in each cell. That sample is referred to as the Panel.
The sample for Zambia ES 2007 was drawn from a master list obtained by compiling two different updates of a list of establishments provided by Central Statistical Office. During the survey period, the master list was updated as new information regarding establishments that had closed or were out-of-scope was gathered and other establishments were added. The final population size in all strata and locations was 3,336.
The 2007 survey included panel data collected from establishments surveyed in 2003. That survey included establishments in all four manufacturing strata distributed across the entire country. In order to collect the largest possible set of panel data, an attempt was made to contact and survey every establishment in the panel, provided it was located in one of the four cities covered by this survey, it operated in the universe under study, and that the number of panel firms of a certain size in a given industry in a given city did not exceed the number of establishments in the corresponding sample structure. The remainder of the sample (including the entire rest of universe and retail sample in each city) was selected at random from the master list by a computer program.
Survey non-response must be differentiated from item non-response. The former refers to refusals to participate in the survey altogether whereas the latter refers to the refusals to answer some specific questions. Enterprise Surveys suffer from both problems and different strategies were used to address these issues.
Item non-response was addressed by two strategies:
a- For sensitive questions that may generate negative reactions from the respondent, such as corruption or tax evasion, enumerators were instructed to collect "Refusal to respond" (-8) as a different option from "Don't know" (-9).
b- Establishments with incomplete information were re-contacted in order to complete this information, whenever necessary.
Survey non-response was addressed by maximizing efforts to contact establishments that were initially selected for interview. Attempts were made to contact the establishment for interview at different times/days of the week before a replacement establishment (with similar strata characteristics) was suggested for interview. Survey non-response did occur but substitutions were made in order to potentially achieve strata-specific goals.
For some units it was impossible to determine eligibility because the contact was not successfully completed. Consequently, different assumptions as to their eligibility result in different universe cells' adjustments and in different sampling weights. Three sets of assumptions were considered:
a- Strict assumption: eligible establishments are only those for which it was possible to directly determine eligibility.
b- Median assumption: eligible establishments are those for which it was possible to directly determine eligibility and those that rejected the screener questionnaire or an answering machine or fax was the only response. Median weights are used for computing indicators on the www.enterprisesurveys.org website.
c- Weak assumption: in addition to the establishments included in points a and b, all establishments for which it was not possible to finalize a contact are assumed eligible. This includes establishments with dead or out of service phone lines, establishments that never answered the phone, and establishments with incorrect addresses for which it was impossible to find a new address. Note that under the weak assumption only observed non-eligible units are excluded from universe projections.
Dates of Data Collection
Data Collection Mode
Data Collection Notes
Private contractors conduct the Enterprise Surveys on behalf of the World Bank. Due to sensitive survey questions addressing business-government relations and corruption-related topics, private contractors are preferred over any government agency or an organization/institution associated with government, and are hired by the World Bank to collect the data.
The Enterprise Surveys are usually implemented following a two-stage procedure. In the first stage, a screener questionnaire is applied over the phone to determine eligibility and to make appointments; in the second stage, a face-to-face interview takes place with the manager, owner or director of each establishment. In some cases, when the phone numbers were unavailable in the sample frame, the enumerators applied the screeners in person.
The following survey instruments were used for Zambia ES 2013:
- Manufacturing Module Questionnaire
- Services Module Questionnaire
The survey is fielded via manufacturing or services questionnaires in order not to ask questions that are irrelevant to specific types of firms, e.g. a question that relates to production and nonproduction workers should not be asked of a retail firm. In addition to questions that are asked across countries, all surveys are customized and contain country-specific questions. An example of customization would be including tourism-related questions that are asked in certain countries when tourism is an existing or potential sector of economic growth. There is a skip pattern in the Service Module Questionnaire for questions that apply only to retail firms.
The following survey instruments were used for Zambia ES 2007:
- Core Questionnaire + Manufacturing Module;
- Core Questionnaire + Retail Module;
- Core Questionnaire.
Most of the questions in all three questionnaires are the same. The "Core Questionnaire" is the heart of the Enterprise Survey and contains the survey questions asked of all firms across the world. There are also two other survey instruments - the "Core Questionnaire + Manufacturing Module" and the "Core Questionnaire + Retail Module." The survey is fielded via three instruments in order to not ask questions that are irrelevant to specific types of firms, e.g. a question that relates to production and nonproduction workers should not be asked of a retail firm. In addition to questions that are asked across countries, all surveys are customized and contain country-specific questions. An example of customization would be including tourism-related questions that are asked in certain countries when tourism is an existing or potential sector of economic growth.
Data entry and quality controls are implemented by the contractor and data is delivered to the World Bank in batches (typically 10%, 50% and 100%). These data deliveries are checked for logical consistency, out of range values, skip patterns, and duplicate entries. Problems are flagged by the World Bank and corrected by the implementing contractor through data checks, callbacks, and revisiting establishments.
Enterprise Analysis Unit
Confidentiality of the survey respondents and the sensitive information they provide is necessary to ensure the greatest degree of survey participation, integrity and confidence in the quality of the data. Surveys are usually carried out in cooperation with business organizations and government agencies promoting job creation and economic growth, but confidentiality is never compromised.
The use of this dataset must be acknowledged using a citation which would include:
- the identification of the Primary Investigator (including country name)
- the full title of the survey and its acronym (when available), and the year(s) of implementation
- the survey reference number
- the source and date of download (for datasets disseminated online)
The World Bank. Zambia Enterprise Survey (ES) 2007-2013, Panel Data, Ref. ZMB_2007_ES-P_v02_M. Dataset downloaded from [URL] on [date].
The user of the data acknowledges that the original collector of the data, the authorized distributor of the data, and the relevant funding agency bear no responsibility for use of the data or for interpretations or inferences based upon such uses.
DDI Document ID
Development Data Group
Documentation of the study
Date of Metadata Production
DDI Document version
v02 (January 2016)
- Variables documenting sampling region (a2, a3a, a3b, a3c) and sampling industry (a4a, a4b) were updated.
v01 (May 2014)