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Alternative Government Data Sources  

Last Updated: Jul 1, 2014 URL: Print Guide
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Government shutdown affecting research

The U.S. Federal Government shutdown is having a huge effect on the country. Libraries and researchers are not exempt from this. Many of us use government websites to gather statistical data and information for our research. As a result of the government shutdown many federal agencies, like the U.S. Census Bureau and the Library of Congress, have also shutdown their websites. This guide will help you find alternative resources that you may be able to use to seek out the information you normally would have been able to access on these government websites. Please note that this does not affect state government resources, only federal government.

If you're still confused about which services and agencies are affected by the government shutdown CNN has created a handy guide to help you wade through the information. Also, if you would like to learn more about which data sources are being affected by the shutdown the Pew Research Center had published an article to explain this further.

As always, if you need help finding resources please stop by the library or contact us and we will do our best to help you find alternative resources.

Government websites that are still available

While you can still use these websites to gather and analyze old data, please note that new or current data may no longer be published. This list is not exhaustive, but indicates websites on which library staff have been able to access data.

Library databases affected by the shutdown

See the note below each database for information on how it is affected.

  • ERIC (U.S. Department of Education version)
    This database is not accessible. Please note that the EBSCOHost version of ERIC is still functional, except for ERIC Documents.
  • PubMed
    PubMed is being maintained with minimal staffing according to their website.
  • PubMed Central
    PubMed is being maintained with minimal staffing according to their website.
    Some links to full-text may not work properly.
  • Lexis-Nexis
    Government resources may be out-of-date or not function properly.

Alternate resources for government data

Please note that while you may be able to find already published statistics, many agencies are no longer publishing current statistics during the shutdown.

  • Internet Archive
    The Internet Archive's Wayback Machine provides archived versions of many of the websites that are currently unavailable. This link contains information about how to access the archive of the sites.
  • CQ Researcher
    Covers controversial contemporary issues and contains many government collected statistics on these topics
  • CQ Weekly
    Full-text of news publication covering government and politics
  • Population Reference Bureau
    Reports on data gathered from census reports and demographic data.
    U.S. legislative information
  • Social Explorer
    Not all data on this site is free, but it contains information gathered through census reports.
  • Geohive
    Global population statistics

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