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ICPSR - Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research

What is ICPSR

The Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) is the world's largest archive of digital social science data. ICPSR provides data and resources to a community of hundreds of institutions around the world including students, scholars, policy analysts, policymakers, government officials, and the media. 

ICPSR data and resources are available to BSU community (students, staff, faculty). You can search ICPSR's data holdings by keyword, browse by thematic categories, and search by individual variables.

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Guide to Social Science Data Preparation and Archiving

Guide to Social Science Data Preparation and Archiving ( (PDF)



  • Why Should I Archive Data?
  • How Do I Deposit Data?
  • What Services Does ICPSR Offer?
  • Using the Guide

Importance of Data Sharing and Archiving

  • Planning Ahead for Archiving and Preservation of Data
  • The Data Life Cycle

Proposal Development and Data Management Plans

  • Recommended Elements for Data Management Plans
  • Other Considerations
  • Summary Table: Elements of a Data Management Plan
  • An Example Data Management Plan for Depositing Data with ICPSR

Project Start-Up

  • Importance of Good Data Management

Data Collection and File Creation

  • Best Practice in Creating Research Data
  • Quantitative Data
  • Qualitative Data
  • Other Data Types
  • Best Practice in Creating Metadata

Data Analysis

  • Master Datasets and Work Files

Addressing Confidentiality Issues

  • Respondent Confidentiality

Depositing Data

  • File Formats
  • Archiving Files from Analysis of Existing or Secondary Data