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INST 4950: Capstone: Data & Government Information

American Politics

US Political Stats 

  • Easy to use visualization and research tool for researching Congress, the Presidency, elections, campaign finance, & the Supreme Court
  • Create maps and charts or download data

Historical Statistics of the United States (print)

  • Historic Population, Government, Economic, Welfare statistics
  • Located in Coe level 2 in Reference

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP)

  • The center analyzes federal budget priorities
  • Focuses on how budgetary choices and policies affect low-income Americans
  • Also analyzes state budgets and topics such as food assistance, health care, housing, and social security

The Free Speech Project

  • A nonpartisan and independent resource for tracking free speech events and news, mostly as related to higher education.
  • Supported by Georgetown University and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

Public Opinion Polls

Pew Research Center

  • Nonpartisan public opinion polling data covering U.S. Politics, media, religion, global topics

European Public Opinion (from the EU)

  • Public opinion polls from the EU on life satisfaction, EU membership, EU policy, U.S. relations, more‚Äč

PAIS International

  • Try keyword searching "public opinion" and a topic; for example: in the top search box type "public opinion" and in the second search box, next to AND:, type a topic like "immigration"



Along with all of these government resources, Data-Planet is another great source for a wide variety of data. Check Data-Planet for:

  • Economic indicators
  • Education
  • Labor
  • Government
  • Stock & commodity prices
  • Global trade & industry

If you can't find something in particular, give Data-Planet a try -it contains a wealth of data

U.S. Census & American Community Survey (Demographics)

United States Census Bureau

  • Try QuickFacts (center of homepage) as a starting point for "snapshot" demographics on nation, state, county, and city levels
  • Use the Topics tab to browse by topics like population, economy, business, health, education, and more

Social Explorer

  • Provides easy access to Decennial Census & American Community Survey data on a variety of scales -from nationwide down to census tracts and census blocks
  • Map demographic data in minutes! Create a webmap or a "static" map for your papers/reports
  • Download data tables in spreadsheet form

American FactFinder (by the U.S. Census)

  • Comprehensive outlet for Decennial Census, American Community Survey, Economic Census, and more
  • Provides cross-tabulated data tables in spreadsheet form
  • Phil recommends: go to advanced search, choose a topic, choose a geography, then view results... Ask for Help!

Government Information

  • Main portal to all U.S. Government-produced data

Statistical Abstract of the United States (via ProQuest)

  • Comprehensive statistical information of U.S. social, political, and economic topics

Bureau of Justice Statistics

  • Law enforcement statistics including crime by type, victims data, and corrections data

Bureau of Labor Statistics

  • Statistics related to labor such as unemployment rate, consumer prices, pay & benefits, and more

National Center for Education Statistics

  • Portal for U.S. Education Statistics covering early childhood education, elementary & secondary education, postsecondary education, and more


Europa World Online

  • Covers Europe (and beyond) in areas of health & welfare, agriculture, industry, finance, trade, population
  • Use the comparative report builder to compare indicator variable of different countries

World Data Bank (by the World Bank)

  • Time series data on a variety of topics, mostly related to economic and social indicators
  • Generate tables, charts, and maps

UN Data

  • Find UN data on crime, education, economics, environment, gender, and much more -global coverage
  • The UN's portal for data provided by FAO (Food & Agriculture Org.), UN Statistics Division, WHO (World Health Org), and several others

Data & Government Information Sources for Political Science

The resources listed on this page are a general selection of data and government sources for Political Science. This guide is Not Exhaustive! For more sources of data or government information, visit the Government Information Research Guide.


ICPSR is the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research. ICPSR is an archive of Social Science research and data. In ICSPR you will find data related to:

  • Demography
  • Economics
  • Health Care
  • Politics
  • Social behavior
  • Public Opinion

The majority of data in ICPSR is available for public use. However, be advised that reuse of some datasets are restricted. Carefully read the documentation of a dataset or survey you might like to use.