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DATA > Century of Difference: Data Sources

USA: A Century of Difference: Data Sources
The Current Population Survey Annual Demographic Files
The Current Population Survey (CPS) is a monthly household survey conducted by the Census Bureau. It is designed to provide estimates of employment, unemployment, and other characteristics of the general labor force. The March Annual Demographic Files contain the core questions included in every CPS as well as detailed demographic data representative of the noninstitutionalized United States civilian population. This project uses data from the Annual Demographic Files from 1968 through 2000 to provide inter-censal estimates of characteristics of the US population as well as more detailed descriptions of recent trends.
CPS data is available from the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR), and files from 1992 on can be downloaded via Ferret at the Census Bureau.

The Integrated Public Use Microdata Series
The Integrated Public Use Microdata Series (IPUMS), created at the University of Minnesota, provide the basis for examination of population characteristics and trends over the course of the twentieth century. The IPUMS consists of public use samples of census microdata drawn from thirteen federal censuses, spanning the period from 1850 to 1990. Uniform codes for variables have been created (when possible) to harmonize measures available in multiple censuses. The IPUMS data is available via an extraction and download procedure.

The General Social Survey
The General Social Surveys (GSS) are yearly surveys conducted by the National Opinion Research Center since 1972 (biennial since 1994). Core topics covered in the GSS include socioeconomic status, social mobility, social control, the family, race relations, sex relations, civil liberties, and morality. In addition, topical modules providing indepth coverage of particular areas have been included since 1977. Many topical modules are coordinated with International Social Survey Program (ISSP) surveys conducted in other countries, permitting cross-national comparisons.
Data from the GSS are available from ICPSR, the Roper Center, as well through interactive access via SDA.

The Consumer Expenditure Survey Family Level Extracts 1980:1 - 1998:2
The CES provides information about the buying habits of Americans. Data from this source are gathered from a nationally representative sample of "consumer units" - all members of a housing unit related by familial ties or, for unrelated persosns, financial dependence - via a Diary Survey and and Interview survey. In addition to expenditures made by the consumer units and its members, demographic information about those members, their earnings, and their assets. The data files we use are drawn from the quarterly interview survey by John Sabelhaus and Ed Harris of the CBO, and represent condensed measures of the original data which are consistently organized over time. The data are avaiable online from the National Bureau of Economic Research.

The Annual Housing Surveys/American Houseing Surveys, 1973 - 1999
The AHS consists of two data collection efforts, one for a nationally representative sample of houseing units, and a second directed at a rotating sample of metropolitan areas. Data collected on these surveys includes the condition of the unit, number of rooms by room type, adequacy and completeness of kitchens and bathrooms, ownership, age, neighboorhood quality and services, and demographic information about the occupants. We use the National Files, obtainable through ICPSR (www.icpsr.umich.edu). The most recent AHS files are also available on the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) site (www.huduser.org).

Summary File Data from the Decennial Censuses
Summary data, in the form of tabulated counts or summary statistics for the nation, regions, states, cities, and areas down to the census tract (and below for some counts), are produced and released by the Bureau of the Census after each decennial census.
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