SOEP Cross-country

Analysis in an international context

SOEP is also part of international data sets. The enrichment, linking and harmonisation of SOEP survey data with household (panel) data from other countries is a particular concern of SOEP in terms of content and methodology.

On this page, we present data sets with which you can analyse Germany in an international comparison.

Cross National Equivalent File (CNEF)

The Cross National Equivalent File 1970-2013 is an international panel data set and contains equivalently defined variables for education, employment, income, health, life satisfaction documented by studies of the following countries:

Australia: Household Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA)

Canada: Canadian Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics (SLID)

Germany: Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP)

Korea: Korea Labor and Income Panel Study (KLIPS)

Russia: Russia Longitudinal Monitoring Survey (RLMS-HSE),

Switzerland: Swiss Household Panel (SHP)

United States: Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID)

United Kingdom: British Household Panel Study (BHPS)

Currently, the access to each CNEF dataset has to be granted separately by each country-specific institution (we are working on a harmonized access procedure).

Here you can find an overview how to apply for each country‘s CNEF dataset.
You have to order the CNEF data CD via Dean Lillard at Ohio State University (). You must request the password to unpack the country-specific CNEF-data from Ohio State University, once access has been granted to you. You can download the PSID-CNEF here.

For further information and support you may also contact Charlotte Bartels () at SOEP.


The SOEP data are available in different packages alone or in combination with international data:">Two cross-sectional data sets containing the SOEP data allow for cross-country comparison. The Luxembourg Income Study (LIS) Database combines datasets from over 30 countries and contains income data supplemented by demographic and labor market information. The Luxembourg Wealth Study (LWS) Database contains comparable wealth information from ten countries. Further information can be found on the homepage of the LIS - Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg  (LIS).


The European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC) contains data from across Europe on individual and household income, household living conditions, individual health, aspects of child care, employment, and self-assessed financial situation. EU-SILC offers both cross-sectional and longitudinal data. The German EU-SILC dataset currently contains only cross-sectional data.

The EU-SILC Clone dataset provided at DIW Berlin offers additional longitudinal information on private households in Germany based on data from the Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) study. The EU-SILC Clone will be included in the annual SOEP data release starting in fall 2018 and will require a data distribution contract with DIW Berlin. The SOEP data are provided free of charge for scientific research. Researchers can compare all of the information in the dataset with longitudinal data on other European countries that can be obtained from Eurostat upon request.

Please find the documentation of the EU-SILC Clone 2017 here. | PDF, 7.67 MB

Past cross-coutry projects


The SOEP data as part of the European Community Household Panel (ECHP): The SOEP data had been converted into the ECHP data for the years 1994 to 2001. This project has been coordinated by EUROSTAT in Luxembourg.


Parts of the SOEP data in the CHER database. This database, including data from 14 EU countries as well as Poland, Hungary, Switzerland and the United States in the period from 1990 to 2001, had been created by the "Consortium of Household Panels for European Socio-economic Research" (CHER). This EU financed project also collected and prepared key information from macro-, meso- and institutional data to link with the dataset.