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Social and Decision Sciences: Data and Statistics

Sources for Datasets

Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR)
The ICPSR archive includes studies from the social sciences and related disciplines. Since Carnegie Mellon is a member of ICPSR, faculty and students can order data free of charge. Data files can be downloaded directly to your on-campus workstation from the web site. From off-campus, you can download data using VPN. Most studies include electronic documentation files. Some older studies only have print documentation at the present time but eventually all studies will include electronic documentation. You can search CAMEO to determine if the library already has a particular codebook. 

Integrated Public Use Microdata Series (IPUMS--University of Minnesota - Minnesota Population Center)
Two groups of data are available. IPUMS-USA consists of twenty-five samples of the American population drawn from the federal censuses of 1850 to 1990. IPUMS assigns uniform codes across all the samples and brings relevant documentation into a coherent form to facilitate analysis of social and economic change. IPUMS-International is a new project dedicated to collecting and distributing census data from around the world. Its goals are to collect and preserve data and documentation, harmonize data, and to disseminate the data absolutely free.

International Federation of Data Organizations (IFDO)
This site offers links to prominent data archives throughout the world.


NESSTAR Explorer offers a free tool to find data across organisational and national boundaries and for browsing and downloading both data and metadata. Users must download the NESSTAR Explorer software and register online to download data.

Pew Research Center Datasets
The Pew Research Center's Internet Project offers access for scholars to raw datasets from their research.  These datasets cover a wide variety of topics related to the use of the Internet and technology.

State and Local Statistics

Census State Data Centers
These centers are cooperative ventures between the Census Bureau and state statistical offices. The Pennsylvania site includes much of the data found in the Pennsylvania Abstract and the County Data Books described below.

Pennsylvania State Data Center
Hosted by Penn State, this online resource provide updated fact sheets and demographic statistics for the state of Pennsylvania.

Western Pennsylvania Regional Data Center (WPRDC)

"The Data Center maintains Allegheny County and the City of Pittsburgh’s open data portal, and provides a number of services to data publishers and users. The Data Center also hosts datasets from these and other public sector agencies, academic institutions, and non-profit organizations."

Pennsylvania Abstract 1992-. (Print resource)
Data covers population, housing, marital status, employment and income, education, social services, state and local taxes, crime and law enforcement, and sectors of the economy.

Pennsylvania County Data Book (Print resource)
Hunt Library holds volumes for the six counties that make up the Pittsburgh metropolitan area -- Allegheny, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Washington, and Westmoreland counties. The spiral-bound data books include information on demographics, transportation, housing, income, and quality of life. Much of this data is available through the Pennsylvania State Data Center web site.


United States Statistics

FedStats provides links to more than 100 statistical agencies of the United States government. The content and web interfaces are maintained by the individual agencies. Individual agency links are available here.

U.S. Census Bureau
The Census Bureau site is the primary source for Census 2000 data. Much of the data can be manipulated online and the results downloaded. In addition, the Census Bureau provides population estimates and projections, economic statistics, government finance data, and much more.

Statistical Abstract of the United States1878- (annual)

HUNT REF-1 HA202 1985
The Statistical Abstract is a compilation of statistics published by the U.S. government and some private organizations. This is a very useful starting point for statistical information as it gives sources for all tables and frequently has time-series data. The current edition is available on the U.S. Census Bureau web site.

ProQuest Statistical Insights
Thousands of statistical publications on all topics. Recent data is available here; earlier data is on microfiche in Hunt Library.

Population Reference Bureau
PRB provides instant summaries, both graphically and in text, of the demographic features of the U.S. population. Data can be customized by users on such topics as population estimates and projections, race and ethnicity, migration, income and poverty, the elderly population, and more. The data also may be downloaded.

International Statistics

Interational Statistical Agencies
Many statistics are gathered by governments at the country level. This page provides a list of links to statistical agencies around the world.

Global Health Observatory
The World Health Organization provides this portal to access data and statistics related to issues of global health.

UN Data

This site provides a portal into the wealth of data and statistics collected by the United Nations.  Topics covered include health, demography, migration, employment, income, trade and much more.


Federal Election Commission

Created in 1975, the FEC is designed to disclose campaign finance information; to enforce the limits, prohibitions and other provisions of the election law; and to administer the public funding of Presidential elections. Information includes a citizens' guide to contributions and the law, financial information about candidates, parties, and PACs; and financial reports filed by presidential and house campaigns, parties, and PACs.

Electoral College Box Scores (National Archives and Records Administration)
Presented here are electoral college results for presidential and vice presidential candidates, vote totals, and other information about elections from 1789 until the present.

Pennsylvania Department of State
Information is provided regarding voter registration, campaign finance, and elections in Pennyslvania.

Public Opinion

Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR)

The results of numerous polls are archived here and can be downloaded by CMU members.

Pew Global Attitudes Project Key Indicators Database

Pew Research Center conducts public opinion surveys around the world on a broad array of subjects ranging from people's assessments of their own lives to their views about the current state of the world and important issues of the day.  This site offers online data analysis and raw data download.

The Gallup Organization
The Gallup site contains polling results from 1997 to the present. These reports include a summary, the questions asked, and the results for specific questions.

The Roper Center Public Opinion Research Archive
The Roper Center for Public Opinion Research is one of the world’s leading archives of social science data, specializing in data from public opinion surveys.  Founded in 1947, the Roper Center holds data ranging from the 1930s to the present. Its collection now includes over 23,000 datasets and adds hundreds more each year. In total, the archive contains responses from millions of individuals on a vast range of topics.