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st:how to connect a variable's value with another variable's name


From   Mandy fu <mandy.fu1@gmail.com>
To   statalist@hsphsun2.harvard.edu
Subject   st:how to connect a variable's value with another variable's name
Date   Wed, 25 Mar 2009 15:04:25 -0500

Hi all,

I'm not sure how to connect a variable's value with another variable's name.
My data set is about characteristics of all the firms  for which
respondents  work in a year. Variable "main_firm" (whose value is
1,2,3,4)  provides  the number of the firm  where the worker works for
the longest time in that year. the variables location1-4 give the
location of each firm the respondent works according to the time
sequence from the earliest to the most recent. It looks like follows:
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
workerID  main_firm   location1 location2  location3  location4
      1           2              MA          NY                  NJ
     MA
       2           1              NY           MI                  NJ
        ----
       3           3              FL           NY                  MA       ----
       4           1              NH         -----
----       ----
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
For example, for the first respondent, he totally works for 4 firms in
that year and firm 2 is the one he works the longest time.
I want to generate a new variable "main_location" to indicate the
location of the main firm , like this:
-----------------------------------------------------------
workerID          main_location
    1                      NY
    2                      NY
    3                      MA
    4                      NH
-----------------------------------------------------------
That is, new variable"main_location" equals variable "location`i' " ,
where `i' is the value of variable "main_firm". I 'm not sure how to
code this. Any comments will be helpful.
Thanks!

Mandy
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