Official Microdata

The German Microdata Lab (GML) collects Microcensus data of official statistics. It offers comprehensive services for utilizing the data. For the following data sets, substantial documentation is available (e.g. data access, variables lists, questionnaires, setups).

Microdata tools

Our microdata tools are a service provided by the German Microdata Lab (GML). These are brief reports which give information on the practical use of microdata in various subject areas and are complemented by tabulations, graphs, and SPSS/Stata jobs, including, among others, the construction of various social science classification systems (e.g. CASMIN-Classification) for microcensus data. Furthermore, the concepts underlying data from official sources are explained (e.g. labor force concept).

To the microdata tools


The microcensus is the official statistical investigation into German demography and the labor market. Carried out using a representative sample of one per cent of the German population, it is the largest-scale annually-conducted household survey in Germany. It has been carried out in West Germany since 1957 and in East Germany since 1991. Integrated into the microcensus is the EU Labor Force Survey. As a rule the survey is based on oral interviews. The majority of questions are subject to the obligation to provide information. Based on a household sample, every individual living in the household is questioned or, alternatively, an adult provides information about the other members of the household.

The scientific community has access to anonymised data of the Microcensus (Scientific Use Files). In addition to the basic files of the years 1973,1976, 1978,1980, 1982,1985, 1987 and from 1989 to 2011, there are two panel files (1996-1999, 2001-2004) and a regional file (2000) available. 

Microcensus supplementary survey 1971 (MZU 71):

The Microcensus supplementary survey of 1971 (MZU 1971) contains detailed information on the occupational and social situation of the German population from 1939 through 1971. The respondents were surveyed in retrospect. The data can be analysed at the GML.

European Microdata

Currently there is metainformation available on the following data: European Adult Education Survey (AES), European Union Labour Force Survey (EU-LFS), European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SLC), Statistics on Information and Communications Technologies usage in households and by individuals (ICT), Community Innovation Survey (CIS), Structure of Earnings Survey (SES), Household Budget Survey (HBS), European Health Interview Survey (EHIS).

Metadata for Scientific Uses Files (EU data) in MISSY

Income & Expenditure Survey

The data stock of the GML includes the Income and Expenditure Survey of the years 1962/63 and from 1978 through 2008, which can be analysed at the GESIS. Furthermore, acess is provided to metadata and program routines (microdata tools), which makes working with EVS data much easier.

Population and occupation census 1970 (VZ 1970)

The GML possesses anonymised data on the 10% sample of the Population and Profession Census from 1970 as well as on the 1% subsample. The data on the 1970 Population Census has been provided to research data centres and is obtainable there as Scientific Use Files.


Several data sets from official statistics of the GDR is available at the GML. These are representative samples of cultural and social living conditions concerning income and consumption in households of the GDR during the late 1980’s.

Workplace and occupation census (AZBZ)

Machine readable conditioned, multidimensional tables of the Profession Census from 1882 through 1972 (46 tables) and the Workplace Census from 1875 through 1970 (28 tables) is available at the GML. The data which is available in ASCII-format can be analysed by using the statistical program SPSS for example.

Further information to microdata access

Further information and links to statistical offices, research data centres, etc. can be accessed here.