Have a question? Need assistance? Use our online form to ask a librarian for help.
Gulnar Nagashybayeva, Business Reference Specialist, Science, Technology and Business Division
Note: This guide is based on the bibliography created by Angela Wilson, retired Business Reference Specialist, Science, Technology and Business Division
Created: February 2022
Last Updated: October 2022
Get connected to the Library’s large and diverse collections related to science, technology, and business through our Inside Adams Blog. This blog also features upcoming events and collection displays, classes and orientations, new research guides, and more.
National censuses vary from country to country in the priority given to national enumeration, in the type and level of data they contain, in geographical coverage, in the terminology and methodologies used, in how the data is presented, and in how often they are conducted, if at all. As a result, census publications are sometimes difficult to find and to use.
National censuses are collected, published and disseminated primarily by each country's census or national statistical office (NSO) or its equivalent. Census data are published in each country's vernacular, and as appropriate, many offer English as well as other language versions. Statistical offices of international agencies (e.g. United Nations, statistical organizations for member states like the ASEAN, Eurostat, and OECD), also publish statistical data including population figures. The most consistent data in terms of format and frequency, whether online or in print are usually generated from them.
Current estimates and projection figures update official census year data. These data are readily available in the current statistics sections of electronic resources, in serials that update printed publications, and are usually the reference figures found in statistical compendia.
Electronic resources provide quick access to current and some historical data. Among the better sites for international census data are those maintained by the census or NSOs of each country, by international organizations, by research organizations, or by university library research centers. These sites usually contain a combination of resources, links to data sites, and actual census data. When researching international census data online, expect differences in data access, i.e., what's free, fee-based, browse only, downloadable, etc. Have patience when maneuvering through a statistical web site because it may take several links to obtain the data you want.
Please see the U.S. Census Connections: A Resource Guide if you are interested in the U.S. census data. Send your questions related to finding census data to Ask a Librarian.
Part of the Science, Technology & Business Division at the Library of Congress, Business Reference Services is the starting point for conducting research at the Library of Congress in the subject areas of business and economics. Here, reference specialists in specific subject areas of business assist patrons in formulating search strategies and gaining access to the information and materials contained in the Library's rich collections of business and economics materials.