Sources of Data for Analysis
Major Data Archives
- ICPSR General Archive
ICPSR is the world's largest archive of social science data. The archive is international in scope but most resources are American. Special collections include the Center for Population Research in LGBT Health, the National Addiction & HIV Data Archive Program, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Data Archive, the Terrorism & Preparedness Data Resource Center, and others.
- Data from the Statistics Canada Data Liberation Initiative as well as other Canadian-focused microdata is available through ODESI.
- Murray Research Archive Collection ( part of the Harvard Dataverse network)
Includes a number of historically significant studies in sociology and psychology, diversity samples covering ethnic minorities, diverse sexual orientations, etc., and a number of significant longitudinal studies (the original collection was focused on data for studying lives over time).
- The ARDA - Association of Religion Data Archives
Data on congregations and their members, surveys of clergy, surveys of the public on religion. Primarily U.S. but some Canadian and international surveys are present.
- CORA - the Canadian Opinion Research Archive
Assorted media polls, surveys and political research on Canada.
- Odum Institute for Research in Social Science
The Odum Institute's Dataverse houses the Louis Harris Data Center of publicly available opinion survey data collected by Louis Harris and Associates, Inc.
- NADAC (National Archive of Data on Arts & Culture) is a rich collection of microdata files thematically organized through ICPSR. This thematic collection includes: 129 studies and over 82,000+ variables relating to data on the arts and on the arts' value and impact for individuals and communities.
Academic Collaborations - Data from Large-scale International Projects
- World Values Surveys
Survey of the basic values and beliefs of the publics of more than 80 societies
- Global Barometer and the Barometers
Includes Afrobarometer, Arab Barometer, Asian Barometer, and Latinobarometro. Eurobarometer is separate.
- International Social Survey Programme
Includes the Canadian General Social Survey, available from Statistics Canada sources above. (country files have more detail; the international study only includes certain core questions)
- Comparative Study of Electoral Systems
Collaborative program of research among election study teams from around the world. Includes the Canadian Election Study (individual country files have more detail; the international study only includes certain core questions).
- International Dating Violence Study (IDVS), 2001-2006
The IDVS was conducted by a consortium of researchers in 32 nations. It includes data on both perpetration and being a victim of violence. The data were obtained using questionnaires completed by university students in all major world regions.
National Statistics Agency: Statistics Canada
- Collect or compile statistics on demographics, health, economics, agriculture…
- Public-Use Microdata Files (PUMFs) released through Data Liberation Initiative, can be downloaded through ODESI.
- Restricted-Use data files can be accessed through our Research Data Centre
- Not all Statistics Canada data is made available though the RDCs (or at all); see lists of available RDC data here and here.
Multiple statistical agencies – no centralized collection or distribution point. The ones that release significant amounts of public-use microdata include:
- Census Bureau
- National Center for Health Statistics
- Bureau of Labor Statistics
Includes the massive, incredibly rich National Longitudinal Surveys
- National Center for Education Statistics
See for example the Early Childhood Longitudinal Surveys
- U.S. public use government data tends to be more detailed than Canadian (has detail that in Canada would be restricted)
- U.S. restricted government data may not be available to Canadians.
Most other (non-U.S.) countries have national statistical agencies, and may (unlike the U.S. and Canada) have national data archives that will archive government and other data
- Australia: Bureau of Statistics and Australian Data Archive
- U.K.:Office for National Statistics and the UK National Data Archive
- For other European data archives, see the Council of European Social Science Data Archives
Data from Intergovernmental and Nongovernmental Organizations
In less developed countries, these are a primary source for population welfare data that in developed countries is collected by the government. These are also a good source for international comparative data.
- The International Household Survey Network maintains a very comprehensive central survey catalog that can be searched by country or survey series.
- BREAD/Mcarthur/CCPR Survey Database can be searched by location, survey module. Less comprehensive than the above, but covers most of the major surveys and has a detailed listing of topics to browse by.
- Demographic and Health Surveys
Surveys in over 85 countries. Focus on fertility, family planning, maternal and child health, gender issues, and nutrition. Coverage includes low and middle income countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, Middle East and Europe.
- The World Bank Living Standards Measurement Study Surveys
Around 90 surveys in 40+ primarily middle-income countries from 1985 to present. Key topics of household questionnaire: consumption, income, savings, employment, health, education, fertility, nutrition, housing and migration
- Unicef's Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys
Designed to assess progress on World Fit for Children Plan of Action and Millennium Development Goals. Good coverage of low-income countries. Focus on fertility, family planning, maternal and child health, very limited demographic and income/employment information.
- International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) Surveys
Cover Africa, Asia and Latin America. The household and community surveys include several surveys of household characteristics, consumption and health as well as agricultural information and land use. Their data also includes program evaluation surveys such as the “Food for Education” study
- World Health Organization's World Health Survey
Canada and the U.S. are not included, but many developed and developing coutries are. To access the data you need to first complete and submit a data use agreement.
- Pew Research Centre
U.S. based, but Global Attitudes surveys are international. Large survey collections include including Religion & Public Life, the Global Attitudes Project, and the opinion data in the Research Center for the People & the Press.