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Heinz College: 90-872 Using R for Public Data Analysis: Finding Public Datasets

This guide provides links to resources for learning more about working with R and RStudio, and for finding public datasets for analysis.

Google Dataset Search



Try Google's dataset search. Search the web for datasets on any topic.

Citing Data

Citing data in your writing, posters, and presentations is an important step in providing credit to the data producer, but also allowing readers to better understand your findings and research and to build on your work by using the same data to answer different questions.

The elements that should be included in a complete citation of data are:

  • Author(s)
  • Title
  • Year of publication
  • Publisher or distributor
  • URL, identifier, or other access location


Many sources of data provide examples of citations in different citation styles to make citing those sources easy. In other cases, you'll have to create the citation yourself, depending on the citation style you're using.  Here is a quick guide to citing data in different citation styles:

Link to the Quick Guide to Data Citation
Data Citation Quick Guide Header


Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research

ICPSR logo


The Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) is an organization made up of member institutions with the aim of aquiring, perserving and making available social science data. ICPSR archives data collections in sociology, political science, history, and economics. ICPSR has seven special areas of emphasis in gerontology, substance abuse and mental health, criminal justice, child care, health and medical care, education, and demography. 

As CMU faculty, student or staff, you have access to ICPSR's rich collection of data resources, as well as teaching materials to assist in teaching with data. Membership also provides discounts on a wealth of training and learning opportunities offered by ICPSR.

For more information about ICPSR, visit this ICPSR research guide.

US Demographic Data

US Health Data

US Economic, Housing and Labor Statistics

Local and Regional Data

International Data