Data on China

Basic situation


Lohmar, Zhang and Gale (2004) provide some introductory words on household data in China. As for large-scale survey work, there has been data collection on agricultural production since 1949, but that data is scant and prone to biases. Since 1977 an annual survey of 68,000 households (with a 3-year rotation) has been organized by the National Bureau of Statistics. The Ministry of Agriculture surveys 21,000 households yearly in a panel since 1986.

Lohmar, B., Zhang, L. and Gale, F. (2004) "New Opportunities for Economic Analysis with Rural Household Data in China" (accessed February 5, 2006)


Data links


China Data Center at the University of Michigan

  • GIS data on various levels, statistical yearbooks, some historical data 

China Survey Data Network

  • Joint effort by CCER at Beijing University and the China Data Center at the University of Michigan
  • Hosts a number of useful surveys

China Dimensions at the Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center (SEDAC)

  • Mainly GIS-coded data down to the county level
  • Generally data from the early 1990s, though some longer series are available
  • Holds basic maps, and some on economics and public health

China Health and Family Life Survey (CHFLS) at the University of Chicago

  • Survey on sexual behaviors in China 1999-2000
  • Covers 18 provinces, 83 communities with 5,000 individuals

China Health and Nutrition Survey (CHNS) at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

  • Includes panel data from waves in 1989, 1991, 1993, 1997, 2000, and 2004 (2006 is funded at this point)
  • One of the most widely used surveys for micro-level research on China
  • Still ongoing; revisions and new data are posted occasionally

China Population Information and Research Center (CPIRC)

  • List of various datasources starting in 1982. Mainly census data and supplements
  • Data needs to be purchased

Gansu Human Capital Project at Penn

  • Links to several recent or ongoing surveys: Gansu Survey of Children and Families, Rural School networks, and Human Capital in China’s Urban Labor Market

World Bank China LSMS

  • Basic LSMS for Hebei and Liaoning provinces 1996-1997
  • 780 households in 31 villages
See also: China, Data, Economics