Accessible data is crucial for transparent, collaborative research. Many ISR studies make data freely available to researchers around the world, allowing them to validate and build upon existing knowledge.

ISR supports the public good by providing data for use by researchers and policy makers across the country. Objective data are fundamental to sound decision-making in a variety of fields, including economics, housing policy, health, and education.

The Consumer Sentiment Index, for instance, is a key indicator for policies set by the Federal Reserve. Overseen by Joanne Hsu, who joined ISR as the director of the Surveys of Consumers in 2022, the Consumer Sentiment Index is a crucial bellwether for the UnitedStates’ economic health.

The index of consumer sentiment chart

The Surveys of Consumers measures consumer expectations. Analyses of trends are issued every month, and data are widely used by government agencies, financial institutions, business firms, and scholars, as well as by ordinary citizens.

The same is true of the long-term study Monitoring the Future: Drug Use and Lifestyles of American Youth. This study, which began in 1975, tracks decades-long trends in alcohol and drug use among American adolescents, college students, and young and middle-aged adults, allowing policy makers at the local, state, and national levels to make informed decisions to serve the overall health of the American population. 

Cigarettes: Trends in Lifetime Prevalence of Use in Grades 8, 10, and 12

By tracking trends in adolescent beliefs and behaviors, the Monitoring the Future Study enables policy makers to monitor progress toward national health goals.

Data tables and trends are available for public use at

The ongoing work at the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) also plays a key role in making this data available to the public and safeguarding it for future generations through data collection, curation, and archiving. 

Is the Government Run for the Benefit of All chart

The American National Election Studies provide data that display the over-time ebb and flow of public opinion, electoral behavior and choice.

70+ years of data from the studies are available at

Brady West

There is a shortcoming of longitudinal aging data on minority populations. We’re trying to bring together researchers to extend and advance the work being done in this area

– Brady West, ISR

Read more about how ISR’s data shape social science research

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