Census and Demography

United States

American FactFinder: American Community Survey (ACS)

  • Time period: 2005-2014
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): block group, tract, MSA, CDP, county, state and others (varies by year)
  • Unit of observation: individual or household; aggregated
  • The American Community Survey provides demographic information (e.g., age, sex, race and ethnicity) among other subjects include social, economic and housing. For more details of the subjects, see this page. The ACS produces single-year and multiple-year estimates, see this page. The ACS Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS) files are accessible from the Census Bureau’s sites such as American FactFinder and DataFerrett.

American FactFinder: Decennial Census

  • Time period: 1790-2010
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): block, block group, tract, cities and towns, county, state, ZIP Code tabulation areas and more
  • Unit of observation: aggregated
  • The decennial Census has been conducted every ten years since 1790. The most recent ones (2000 and 2010) provide statistics include population counts, age, sex, race, ethnicity and household information. Also find historical census data on this page. The American FactFinder also provides many more data from other census and surveys. See the list of available data at: http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/nav/jsf/pages/what_we_provide.xhtml.

ESRI: Decennial Census, American Community Survey, Updated Demographics and Tapestry Segmentation

  • Time period: 2010 (Census), 2007-2012 (ACS), 2013-2019 (Updated Demographics), 2013-2014 (Tapestry Segmentation)
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): block group, tract, county, state, place, ZIP code, congressional district and more
  • Unit of observation: aggregated
  • The 2010 Census contains demographic data broken down by age, sex, and race and ethnicity and households by tenure. The ACS includes data on income, poverty status, education, the labor force, journey to work, languages spoken, migration, citizenship, ancestry, military service, and housing characteristics. Updated Demographics provides current-year estimates and 5-year projections for population, households, income, and housing. Tapestry segmentation provides a description of America’s neighborhoods—U.S. residential areas are divided into 67 distinctive segments based on their socioeconomic and demographic composition—then further classifies the segments into LifeMode and Urbanization Groups.

Historical Statistics of the United States

  • Time period: 1790-2000
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): mostly nation
  • Unit of observation: statistics
  • This is the standard source for quantitative indicators of American history. HSUS contains time series tables that cover the demographic, economic, social, political, and institutional history of the U.S. The tables can be downloaded in Excel. The introductory essays provide guidance on sources and reliability and interpretation.

IPUMS-CPS: Current Population Survey (CPS)

  • Time period: 1962-2015
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): city, MSA, county, state
  • Unit of observation: individual, household
  • IPUMS-CPS is a project dedicated to integrating and disseminating data from the Current Population Survey (CPS). The CPS is a monthly survey, conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the U.S. Census Bureau, which collects socio-demographic information and labor force characteristics. Topics include core demographic information (e.g., age, sex, race, marriage) and beyond, such as child support and alimony, computer and internet use, displaced worker, education, food security, job and occupation, tobacco use, veteran, volunteer and voter. For help of using IPUMS-CPS extract system, watch their short tutorial videos. The CPS data are also accessible at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) site here.


  • Time period: 1850-2000 (decennial Census); 2000-2014 (ACS)
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): PUMA, city, county, state and others
  • Unit of observation: individual or household
  • The IPUMS project at the University of Minnesota offers microdata samples from decennial Census and the American community Survey (ACS) – see http://usa.ipums.org/usa/sampdesc.shtml for a list of the samples. The samples provide demographic information (e.g., age, sex, birth, marriage and divorce) and beyond, such as education, work, income and health insurance variables. Begin with their user’s guide and short tutorials on how to extract and use the data.

National Historical Geographic Information System (NHGIS)

  • Time period: 1790-2014
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): block and block group (for individual states), tract, city, county, state (for most areas) and other units such as place, MSA, urban area, zip code area, school area and election area
  • The NHGIS, managed by the Minnesota Population Center, provides summary statistics and GIS boundary files for US censuses and other nationwide surveys. Use the Data Finder to extract and download data files.

National Longitudinal Surveys (NLS)

  • Time period: birth year cohorts 1906-21, 1922-37, 1941-52, 1943-53, 1957-64, 1980-84
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): ZIP code, tract, MSA, county, state (restricted use)
  • Unit of observation: individual
  • The National Longitudinal Surveys is a program of the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. The surveys contain a wide array of topics, e.g., labor market activity, schooling, fertility, health and more. Find demographic information such as household, children, parents, as well as dating, marriage and cohabitation.

Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID)

  • Time period: 1968-present
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): national
  • Unit of observation: individual and families
  • The PSID has collected information on individuals and their descendants continuously since 1968.  Topics covered include employment, income, wealth, expenditures, health, marriage, childbearing, child development, philanthropy, education, and numerous other topics.


  • Time period: mostly 2000-
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): block group, tract, city, county, state, ZIP code, congressional district
  • Unit of observation: varied
  • PolicyMap is an online data and mapping tool that enables researchers to access data about communities and markets across the United States. It contains over 15,000 continuously updated datasets related to demographics, economy, health, education, quality of life and more. Find demographic information such as population, age, race, immigration, homelessness, household, family, and vital statistics.

Social Explorer

  • Time period: 1790-2015
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): block group, tract, MSA, county, state, ZIP code and more
  • Unit of observation: aggregated, microdata
  • This online resource provides quick and easy access to current and historical census data. Users can create custom data reports at many geographic levels and download data in a variety of file formats for use with statistical software.

Statistical Abstract of the United States

  • Time period: 1790-present (2013-2016 editions)
  • Geographic coverage: US
  • Geographic unit(s): city, state, region
  • Unit of observation: statistics
  • Convenient one-volume compendium of demographic statistics (e.g., polulation, births, deaths, marriages and divorces), and many more sections such as economic, social, political information. The source notes can be used to find more detailed tables and machine-readable datasets.

Virginia Population Projections

  • Time period: 2020-2045
  • Geographic coverage: Virginia
  • Geographic unit(s): state and localities (counties and cities)
  • Unit of observation: statistics
  • UVA’s Demographics Research Group at the Weldon Cooper Center produces population projections for the state of Virginia and its localities.  Find projections by decade for 2020-2045 for total population, by age and sex, and by race and ethnicity.

China 2000 & 2010 County Population Census Data with GIS Maps

  • Time period: 2000, 2010
  • Geographic coverage: China
  • Geographic unit(s): county
  • Unit of observation: county
  • This collection GIS shapefiles from the China Data Center contains a county boundary map with more than 1000 comparable variables from the 2000 and 2010 population censuses and map layers for highways, national roads, provincial truck roads, railways, rivers, and coast lines.

China Data Online

  • Time period: 1947-2014 (varies by index)
  • Geographic coverage: China
  • Geographic unit(s): city, county, province and nation
  • This database provides access to various statistical yearbooks published by the National Bureau of Statistics of China. For census and demographic information, our current subscription includes population, employment & labor statistics at various geographic levels.

International Historical Statistics

  • Time period: 1750-2010
  • Geographic coverage: international
  • Geographic unit(s): city, country
  • Unit of observation: statistics
  • IHS is a collection of statistics covering a wide range of socio-economic topics. Find population of countries and cities, vital statistics, infant mortality rates, international migrations, and more. Content is divided into three geographical areas: (1) Africa, Asia, Oceania, (2) Americas, and (3) Europe. Tables can be downloaded in Excel format.

International Household Survey Data

  • Time period: majority post-2000; oldest survey began in 1890
  • Geographic coverage: international
  • Geographic unit(s): varies
  • Unit of observation: household
  • Database of surveys and censuses conducted in low and middle-income countries.  It is maintained primarily by the World Bank and other IGOs.


  • Time period: varies by country, see this page
  • Geographic coverage: international
  • Geographic unit(s): varies by country
  • Unit of observation: individual or household
  • IPUMS-International offers census data from around the world, which include demographic information (e.g., age, sex, birth, marriage, fertility, mortality) and beyond, such as education, work, income, migration and disability. Begin with their short tutorials on how to extract and use the data. Note some other data files that do not fit within their extract system are listed here.


  • Time period: varies
  • Geographic coverage: International
  • Geographic unit(s): varies by source
  • UN Data is a portal for finding data from the UN, OECD, IMF, and more.  Databases related to Census and Demography include: World Fertility Data, Marriage Data, Contraceptive Use, Population Prospects, and Demographic Statistics.

UNICEF Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys (MICS)

  • Time period: 1995-present, in waves
  • Geographic coverage: International (108 low, middle, and high income countries)
  • Geographic unit(s): country
  • Unit of observation: individual or household
  • UNICEF Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys is the “largest source of statistically sound and internationally comparable data on women and children worldwide.”  This provides data for the Millennium Development Goals indicators.  Topics include health, education, and child protection among many others.