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Events
Data.census.gov outreach staff exhibit at conferences and give presentations, and provide workshops and webinars throughout the year. Learn more about our activities here.
Releases
Find out the latest updates about data.census.gov, the Census API, and the Microdata Access, including the most recent data releases and news.
About data.census.gov
EXPLORE DATA ON DATA.CENSUS.GOV
About data.census.gov
EXPLORE DATA ON DATA.CENSUS.GOV

About data.census.gov

What is data.census.gov?

Data.census.gov is the new platform to access demographic and economic data from the U.S. Census Bureau. The vision for data.census.gov is to improve the customer experience by making data available from one centralized place so that data users spend less time searching for data and content, and more time using it.

This transformation stems from overwhelming feedback to simplify the way customers get data.  Since the platform is driven by the data users, we are building in an Agile process that allows customers to provide feedback on the site while we develop. This means that the site does not currently have all the features and data that will ultimately be included, but it allows the customers to drive the final product.

In the end, this platform will be the search that takes over census.gov to allow users a single place to seamlessly access data and digital content from the Census Bureau. Until then, access data.census.gov as the central hub for your data needs.

Background

Data.census.gov is the new platform to access data and digital content from the U.S. Census Bureau. The vision for data dissemination through data.census.gov is to improve the customer experience by making data available from one centralized place so that data users spend less time searching for data content and more time using it.

The vision for data.census.gov stems from overwhelming feedback that the Census Bureau has received to simplify the way customers get data. The Census Bureau continues to work on the customer experience so that it is not necessary for data users to know Census Bureau jargon or perform a complicated search to find the data that they need. In the past, prior to the inception of data.census.gov, the Census Bureau collected information, processed edits, reviewed the data, and disseminated it through multiple websites and applications. Data users had to know how to navigate these sites and applications in order to receive access to the end results.
 

With data.census.gov, we continue to collect, prepare, edit, and review data, but it is disseminated through the Census Bureau’s API on a single platform. This streamlined approach means that data users have access to the Census Bureau data and content in a single place.
 

The data.census.gov platform is built on the Census Data application programming interface, or API, which provides users with direct access to the data they want. As data users search, they will be making direct calls to the data, metadata, and geospatial services in a way that was not done through American FactFinder (AFF). This transition away from a table-based system, like AFF, towards a single-cell based system, creates new opportunities for data visualizations, maps, and other data displays that data users need.
 

As more data and content become available in the standardized format through the Census Data API and, subsequently, data.census.gov, data users will discover that they have more choices and greater flexibility. In addition, this transition is standardizing access to aggregate micro data sets, like the Public Use Micro data (PUMS) files, which are available through data.census.gov.
 

The long-term goal is to integrate data.census.gov with the main Census webpage, census.gov, to create a seamless data user experience, where data are accessible using a single search bar. Until that time, data.census.gov will remain a stand-alone search platform while development continues in improving the site.
 

The Census Bureau is using an Agile development process that relies on incremental progress and user feedback, rather than the traditional “waterfall” methodology of gathering requirements first, and then building and releasing for review once the system is complete. This Agile approach allows for continuous improvement to the site every two months, as the cycle of building, reviewing, releasing, and incorporating feedback repeats. The end result will be a customer-driven experience. 

Feedback Process

A critical part of the development process in improving data.census.gov has been employing data user feedback. When suggestions are emailed to census.data@census.gov, the Census Bureau takes the feedback, compiles and analyzes it, and sends it to the data.census.gov Value Team. The Value Team prioritizes the feedback, with strong consideration to the needs of data users and data programs. The Value Team then decides what features are to be implemented in future development cycles.

Please keep in mind all efforts are focused on migrating data that was previously available on American FactFinder to data.census.gov, and preparing for new data releases, such as the 2020 Census. Once these milestones are complete, we will continue to improve the site by adding functionality based on user feedback. As we commit resources to implement changes, it can take several development cycles to make the updates, test them, and push them to the public site.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Check out our FAQs to learn about using data.census.gov and the Census API. Find out what data, features, and functionality are available.

How-to Materials for Using data.census.gov

Do you have questions on how to use data.census.gov? Check out our step-by-step guidance to learn about new functionality and how to navigate the site.

How-to Materials for Using the Census API

Do you have questions on how to use the Census API? Check out our step-by-step guidance to learn how to use the Census API to find the data you need.

How-to Materials for Using the Microdata Access

Do you have questions on how to use Microdata Access? Check out our step-by-step guidance to learn how to use Microdata Access to create your own tabulations.

Video Tutorials

Our team has created a series of "how-to" videos for those looking for ways to enhance their knowledge of data.census.gov, Census API, and Microdata Access.

Webinars

Did you miss our latest webinar? Would you like to watch it again? View our latest recorded webinars on data.census.gov, the Census API, and Microdata Access.

Outreach

Workshops

In these participatory classes, data.census.gov outreach staff walk you through examples that cover basics and advanced of using data.census.gov to find data.

Latest Data Releases

Find out the latest news about data.census.gov, the Census API, and the Microdata Access, including the most recent data releases.

Upcoming Releases

Find out what datasets coming soon to data.census.gov, the Census API, and the Microdata Access, including what you can expect to see in the coming months.

data.census.gov Updates

View our release notes that provide the known limitations and defects, as well as the full list of features and functionality available.

Newsletter

In these informational one-pagers, we address some of the most frequently asked questions to better assist with your data needs.

About data.census.gov

Contact Us

In these informational one-pagers, we address some of the most frequently asked questions to better assist with your data needs.

Our Development Depends on Your Feedback

Take Action

As we continue to develop new functionalities like search by address and advanced printing and download options, please let us know what features are important to you. 

Please send your questions or comments on data.census.govCensus API, or Microdata Access to census.data@census.gov

Page Last Revised - January 31, 2023
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