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Finding Data for Social Sciences

Elements of Data Citations

As with any resource you use for your research, you will ned to cite datasets. By citing your use of a dataset, you are allowing your work to be reproducible as well providing credit for the creators of the dataset.

Depending on your preferred citation format you will find variation on how to cite the dataset, but listed below you can see common elements that you will need to include.


Who created the dataset. This includes the principle investigators, which can be an individual, a group or an organization.


Complete title of the dataset. This much include the edition or version number if the data has been updated.

Date of Publication

Year of dissemination or publication. If this is an updated edition or version, the date needs to reflect the publication of the version you used.

Publisher or Distributor

Organizational entity that makes the dataset available by archiving, producing, publishing, and/or distributing the dataset.

Electronic Location or Identifier

Web address or unique, persistent, global identifier used to locate the dataset (such as a DOI).

Examples of Citations:


American National Election Studies, University of Michigan, & Stanford University. (2017). ANES 2016 Time Series Study  (ICPSR36824.v2) [data file and codebook].


Torche, Florencia, and Guillermo Wormald. 2015. “2001 Chilean Social Mobility Survey.” ICPSR35299.v1. Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor].


Schildkraut, Deborah, and Ashley Grosse. 21st Century Americanism: Nationally Representative Survey of the United States Population, 2004.  ICPSR27601.v3. Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2015, doi:10.3886/ICPSR27601.v3.