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Finding data: General & discipline-specific data sources

Featured data sources

We've put together a collection of data sources, both general and discipline-specific, that researchers at the University of Sydney may find useful; however, this collection is by no means comprehensive. If you don't find what you're looking for here, then use the search strategies to locate data relevant to you.

If you know of data sources that would be useful to other researchers that aren't listed here, let us know by sending an email to

General data sources

Awesome public datasets – A list of datasets for a range of topics and disciplines. Most, but not all, of the datasets are freely available. – A repository of data published by the Australian government and other public institutions. Most data here is freely available.

Australian Bureau of Statistics – Australia’s official statistical organisation provides freely available data for social, health, economic and demographic research, and census data for 1996–2006. Applications for access to microdata files, which contain detailed information about individuals, can be made on the ABS website.

Research Data Australia – Provides information and access to data from over one hundred Australian research organisations, government agencies, and cultural institutions.

DataCite Search – Searches across datasets that have been give digital object identifiers (DOIs), enabling you to to search, filter and extract all the details from a collection of millions of records.

Dryad – General repository for research data.

Mendeley Data – General repository for research data.

Figshare – General repository for research outputs, including data.

Zenodo – General repository for research outputs, including data.

Earth, marine and atmospheric sciences

Pangaea – Repository of freely available earth and life sciences data. Data editors review data submitted to the repository, ensuring the integrity, authenticity and high usability of datasets.

DataOne Search – Allows users to search across the thousands of publicly accessible data packages within the DataONE (Data Observation Network for Earth) Member Nodes.

Australian Bureau of Meteorology – A catalogue of data collected by the Bureau of Meteorology, including the Climate Data Online dataset of historical weather, temperature, rainfall and solar exposure data.

Geoscience Australia – Geological, geophysical and geographical data, maps and models from Australia's official geoscience organisation.


GenBank – An annotated collection of all publicly available DNA sequences, made available by the US National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Bioplatforms Australia Data Portal – Genetics datasets from many different Australian research projects. You can browse by project or search for individual datasets.


DataMed – A prototype biomedical data search engine that searches for datasets across specific data repositories and sources.

UK Biobank – A longitudinal health resource that follows the health and well-being of 500,000 volunteer participants.

Social sciences

Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) – Data archive of research in the social and behavioral sciences, including specialised collections of data in education, aging, criminal justice, substance abuse, terrorism, and other fields.

Australian Data Archive (ADA) – Archive of social science research data available to academic researchers and other users. ADA International is also a repository for studies by Australian researchers conducted in other countries, particularly throughout the Asia-Pacific region. ADA provide detailed information on how to access ADA data.

Economics, finance and development

Asian Development Bank – Hosts publicly available data on key economic, financial, and social indicators compiled from developing member countries and other international sources.

Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) – Provides demographic, economic and social indicators for the Pacific region.

United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) – ESCAP maintains a statistical database, updated twice a year, with data relating to development issues in Asia and the Pacific.

World Bank Open Data – Provides social, economic, financial and environmental indicators for over 200 countries.

Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade – DFAT provide freely available PDF fact sheets that give an economic snapshot of selected countries and regions as well as statistics on Australia’s trade and economy. They also provide aid budget and statistical information.

Indigenous data archives

Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Data Archive (ATSIDA) – A specialised trusted research data management facility for Australian Indigenous research data.

First Nations Data Centre (FNDC) – Provides access to unpublished and record-level data from First Nations Information Governance Centre's respected survey work, including the First Nations Regional Health Survey and the First Nations Regional Early Childhood, Education and Employment Survey.

Cultural collections

Australian GLAM data – A list of links to datasets, portals and APIs produced by various Australian galleries, libraries, archives and museums.

PARADISEC (the Pacific And Regional Archive for Digital Sources in Endangered Cultures) – A digital archive of records of some of the many small cultures and languages of the world.

National Library of Scotland Data Foundry – Data collections from the National Library of Scotland, including digitised items, collections of item metadata, maps and spatial data, and organisation data.