New for the libraries – Roper Center’s Public Opinion Archives

The Middlebury Libraries recently subscribed to the Public Opinion Archives of the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research. This vast trove of data from public opinion surveys is one of the world’s leading archives of social science data, focused on surveys conducted by the news media and commercial polling firms. Most of the surveys in the Roper Center were conducted on national samples, but there are also some state and local surveys, as well as a number of surveys of special populations of interest.

You can easily search all of the data in the archive through the iPoll interface and even download complete datasets.  iPoll is organized at the question level, providing the tools to sift through nearly a half million questions asked on national public opinion surveys, 1935 to present.  Our subscription includes RoperExpress (offers downloads of over 20,000 datasets from over 100 countries to use with statistical software to conduct bivariate and multivariate analysis) and Roper Explorer (online analysis of several hundred studies allowing cross-tabulations without specialized statistical software).  More details on coverage.  To download datasets, register to create an account and agree to their terms about confidentiality, data reuse, and more.

There are some unique and important aspects of our license agreement that, If you are a researcher who may use entire datasets, you need to be aware of :

  • Neither the Member Institution nor Users may re-disseminate any Roper Center documentation or data obtained from the Roper Center outside of the Member Institution. However, researchers who are actively collaborating with individuals at non-member institutions may provide a copy of relevant data sets to their collaborators solely for their private use in connection with and for the duration of the project, after which they will return or destroy such material. Researchers are advised to obtain a written agreement from such collaborators to abide by the foregoing requirements.
  • Neither Roper Center data nor any tool, application or other application that works with such data may be placed on any web site without the prior express written permission, which the Roper Center may grant, deny or condition in its sole discretion.
  • Users may create aggregated analyses, compilations or derivative works using data available from the Roper Center for their own scholarly research and teaching purposes, but may not use any of the data to develop a database, database service (online or otherwise), automated data or text mining applications, or other information resource in any medium (print, electronic or otherwise, now existing or developed in the future) for use by others. Authorized Users who create such derivative works, subsets of data or applications and wish to share access should contact the Roper Center to archive their materials with the Center to make them available to the research community. The Roper Center may agree or decline to do so in its sole discretion.

Roper also provides educational material for using their tools and learning the basics about polling and analysis.

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