Researcher-generated microdata

Not all microdata comes from the government and commercial sectors. Academic researchers regularly generate data and, in some cases, share it with others. However, finding researcher data can at times be a challenge. Here are some data repositories to try.

Highlighted resource: ICPSR

ICPSR is a major US-based archive containing more than 250,000 files of research in the social and behavioural sciences. It also hosts a range of special collections, some of which are listed below. Accessing ICPSR requires creation of a free account using your U of T email address. You must be at an on-campus computer when you first register for your account; after the account is set up you can access ICPSR from anywhere.

Example specialized ICPSR collections

Other research data repositories

  • Harvard Dataverse. Hosted at Harvard University, researchers from around the world deposit their data here.
  • Borealis, the Canadian Dataverse Repository. This repository is primarily for research data collected by researchers and organizations affiliated with Ontario universities. 
  • Murray Research Archive. A US repsository for social science data on human development and social change, especially data that illuminates women's lives and issues of concern to women.
  • Institute for Social Research. based at the University of Michigan. Studies include the Health & Retirement Study, the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, the U Michigan Surveys of Consumers, and various election surveys.
  • Map & Data Library microdata search. MDL has accepted data deposits from researchers since the 1980s.

The University of Toronto Libraries also maintains a website about research data management, which contains additional suggestions for research data repositories which may contain relevant data.