Data distribution 1984-2014 (soep.v31i)

SOEP Quicklinks:    





SOEPdata Dokumente



Titel: German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP), data of the years 1984-2014, International Scientific Use Version

DOI: 10.5684/soep.v31i
Collection period: 1984-2014
Publication date: November 15, 2015
Principal investigators: Jürgen Schupp, Jan Goebel, Martin Kroh, Carsten Schröder, Klaudia Erhardt, Alexandra Fedorets, Marco Giesselmann, Markus Grabka, Peter Krause, Simon Kühne, Maximilian Priem, David Richter, Rainer Siegers, Paul Schmelzer, Christian Schmitt, Daniel Schnitzlein, Ingrid Tucci, Knut Wenzig

Short description

The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) study is a wide-ranging representative longitudinal study of private households, located at the German Institute for Economic Research, DIW Berlin. Every year, there were nearly 11,000 households, and more than 20,000 persons sampled by the fieldwork organization TNS Infratest Sozialforschung. The data provide information on all household members, consisting of Germans living in the Old and New German States, foreigners, and recent immigrants to Germany. The Panel was started in 1984. Some of the many topics include household composition, occupational biographies, employment, earnings, health and satisfaction indicators. As early as June 1990—even before the Economic, Social and Monetary Union—SOEP expanded to include the states of the former German Democratic Republic (GDR), thus seizing the rare opportunity to observe the transformation of an entire society. An immigrant sample was added as well to account for the changes that took place in German society in 1994/95. Further new samples were added in 1998, 2000, 2002, 2006, 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2013. The survey is constantly being adapted and developed in response to current social developments. The international version contains 95% of all cases surveyed.

Data collector: TNS Infratest Sozialforschung GmbH.

Population: Persons living in private households in Germany.

Selection method: All samples of SOEP are multi-stage random samples which are regionally clustered. The respondents (households) are selected by random-walk.

Collection mode: The interview methodology of the SOEP is based on a set of pre-tested questionnaires for households and individuals. Principally an interviewer tries to obtain face-to-face interviews with all members of a given survey household aged 16 years and over. Additionally one person (head of household) is asked to answer a household related questionnaire covering information on housing, housing costs, and different sources of income. This covers also some questions on children in the household up to 16 years of age, mainly concerning attendance at institutions (kindergarten, elementary school, etc.).

 Data set information:

 Number of units 104,320
 Number of variables 51,203 in 365 Data sets
 Data format STATA, SPSS, SAS, CSV

MD5 fingerprints

Distribution format zip file all files
Stata English/German 23c998681b05bd61a16a3318d08267fd link | TXT, 15.95 KB
Stata German 92e29cac79cc491e09ea5011ebeb2950 link | TXT, 15.95 KB
Stata English fa3586bac7564a4ec262fa533e7a1b4f link | TXT, 15.95 KB
SPSS German 5760ed77a34cf9072fc8a66e0ac4c4e2 link | TXT, 15.95 KB
SPSS English 22a79f0a3d279b7f1ea91f9847da3dba link | TXT, 15.95 KB
SAS German e69b2023662a46403ad43c64c9ccd1f3 link | TXT, 17.83 KB
SAS English 230e114156f77c3e0006df96d4b1c35e link | TXT, 17.83 KB
CSV 8ee76e7c097b4449d96a83f8bad4468f link | TXT, 15.95 KB


Gert G. Wagner, Joachim R. Frick, and Jürgen Schupp (2007): The German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) - Scope, Evolution and Enhancements, Schmollers Jahrbuch (Journal of Applied Social Science Studies), 127 (1), 139-169 (download).

Joachim R. Frick, Stephen P. Jenkins, Dean R. Lillard, Oliver Lipps und Mark Wooden (2007): The Cross-National Equivalent File (CNEF) and its Member Country Household Panel Studies,  Schmollers Jahrbuch, Jg. 127 (4) , 627-654 (download)


The SOEP micro data which we make available for scientific research can only be interpreted using statistical software. Direct use of SOEP data is subject to the high standards for lawful data protection in the Federal Republic of Germany. Signing a contract on data distribution with the DIW Berlin is therefore a precondition for working with SOEP data. After signing the contract, the data of every new wave will be available on request. 
more information