CISER Data ArchiveClientele:
The Data Archive collection of numeric files supports quantitative research in the social sciences and economics. The primary clientele are faculty, graduate students, and research staff in the schools that support CISER: Agricultural and Life Science; Architecture, Art, and Planning; Arts and Sciences; Hotel Administration; Human Ecology, Industrial and Labor Relations; and the Johnson Graduate School of Management. In reality, we support users from other Cornell schools if their researchers have a need for social science data.
Established in 1982, the Data Archive is among the top ten academic social science data repositories in the U.S. The CISER collection is noted for its collection of New York State demographic and economic data, U.S. longitudinal surveys, and national historical statistics.
The Data Archive does not limit its collection by subject areas but attempts to address client needs. It maintains an extensive collection of small area demographic, social and economic indicators, and microdata files, primarily from the U.S. Bureau of the Census, for the time period from 1790 forward. The Archive provides access to a wide range of subjects and most well-known time series. In recent years, there has been increased interest in international macro- and microecomomic series, finance data, public opinion surveys, and voter-behavior studies. The Data Archive serves as a repository for files created through original research of Cornell social science faculty.
In principle, the Data Archive acquires or accepts data for any geographic area. In reality, most of the collection deals with the United States, European countries and international data produced by intergovernmental organizations. There is continuing interest in data related to New York State. Recent years have seen increased emphasis on datasets from international sources, including household income studies. Although it is difficult to obtain data from some developed nations and most developing states, Archive staff will work with researchers in an attempt to meet their needs. However, individual faculty frequently have access to data from developing nations through private agreements.
The Data Archive works with the New York Statistical Information System (NYsis), a unit of CISER and coordinating agency of the U.S. Census Bureau's State Data Center Program, to receive data and documents related to Census statistical programs. The Archive also obtains data and print materials through the regional government depository program of Cornell University Library. Of special value are survey instruments (questionnaires) of fielded studies.
The Archive acquires public-use data only. It does not acquire data that contain personal identifiers such as name, address, and social security number, of living persons or other entities whose rights of privacy may be violated by the revelation of information contained in the data files. The Archive will accept data with personal information, but no specific identifiers, whose use is restricted or limited to statistical analysis, with no attempt to identify individuals. An exception is data files containing personal information that are in the public domain. Examples of such products are those produced and disseminated by the SEC and FEC to fulfill statutory or regulatory responsibilities.
Data with unreasonable restrictions, usually those which restrict use to only a part or parts of the Cornell community, are not accepted or acquired. However, the Data Archive will accept restrictions which relate to use or require special permissions as long as the restrictions allow for equal access to all members of the community.
Relationships with other data organizations:
CISER supports membership in the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) and the Data Archivist serves as Official Representative (OR). As such, the Archivist or a designee represents Cornell at biennial meetings and acts as the de facto selector for machine-readable data files from that organization . The Archivist also works with ICPSR staff to deliver its data services to the Cornell community.
CISER is a limited member of the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research. The Data Archivist is the liaison with the Center regarding acquiring materials and providing Roper services that accompany that membership.
The Data Archive has special relationships with the NY State Department of Education and the NY State Board of Equalization and Assessment to receive data related to elementary and secondary education and local government finances from these agencies.
The Data Archive maintains informal relationships with other data repositories in the United States and Canada to obtain limited-release datasets for use by Cornell researchers.
All funds used to purchase data come from CISER. The Data Archive works with Library selectors, faculty, and departments to secure full or matching funding, especially in cases where a dataset has a potential audience representing more than one academic department. The Data Archive also collaborates with Cornell libraries and other information services at Cornell to assure that collection content and access are not duplicated, so long as CISER clients can use data and material from those units with reasonable effort. When acquiring material, the Archive must consider not only content but format and delivery criteria to fulfill its mission and meet the needs of its clientele.
Special services to the Cornell community:
The Data Archive welcomes opportunities to work with researchers to archive their research data for use by others. Assuming data meet the distribution and documentation criteria applied to other acquisitions, the Archive will add such studies to its collection, convert them to a useable format, and migrate them as necessary to insure continued availability.
Use of Archive materials:
The collection is acquired and maintained for the use of the Cornell community for the purpose of academic research only. Other use or any redistribution is a violation of Cornell'sCampus Code of Conduct and Policy Regarding Abuse of Computers and Network Systems. This is especially important when data are obtained by virtue of memberships, private arrangements with producers or principle investigators, or license agreements. Some distributors from which we obtain datasets have policies regarding file use and redistribution. In some cases, use of specific data files is restricted and permission to use these files must be obtained from a producer or principal investigator.
The Archive will not accept data which contain personal identifiers, except in such cases where these data are part of the public record.
The Archive does not re-distribute copyrighted or proprietary data for use by non-Cornellians.
The Archive will accept data regardless of physical format as long as it is possible to transfer the data to a format for access by the entire Cornell community with reasonable effort. Staff will also work with users or other campus information services to migrate legacy formats, including data on obsolete physical media, to insure continued use of unique studies.
The Archive can reject data deemed to be inadequately documented.
The Archive can reject data deemed to have too many errors, mis-codes, and undocumented values.