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SOEP-Core v32.1 (update, data 1984-2015)

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 15,000 households, and more than 25,000 persons sampled by the fieldwork organization TNS Infratest Sozialforschung. The data provide information on all household members, consisting of Germans living in the Eastern and Western German States, foreigners, and 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. Also immigrant samples were added in 1994/95 and 2013/2015 to account for the changes that took place in Germany society. Further new samples were added in 1998, 2000, 2002, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012. Since Version 31 (10.5684/soep.v31) the SOEP includes the complete data from “Familien in Deutschland” (Families in Germany, FiD) which has been retrospectively integrated into the SOEP and made available in user-friendly form to all SOEP users. The FiD survey has been carried out in parallel to the SOEP as a so-called “SOEP-related study” from 2010 to 2013. The survey is constantly being adapted and developed in response to current social developments. The international version contains 95% of all cases surveyed (see 10.5684/soep.v32i).

Dataset Information

Title: Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP), data from 1984-2015

DOI: 10.5684/soep.v32.1
Collection period: 1984-2015
Publication date: February 14, 2017
Principal investigators: Jürgen Schupp, Jan Goebel, Martin Kroh, Carsten Schröder, Charlotte Bartels, Klaudia Erhardt, Alexandra Fedorets, Marco Giesselmann, Markus Grabka, Peter Krause, Simon Kühne, David Richter, Diana Schacht, Paul Schmelzer, Christian Schmitt, Daniel Schnitzlein, Rainer Siegers, Knut Wenzig

You can see the complete information by clicking at the DOI of the original data set

Data set information:

 Number of units 113,840
 Number of variables 61,902 in 413 data sets
 Data format STATA, SPSS, SAS, CSV

MD5 fingerprints

Distribution format SOEP-Core
zip file all files
Stata bilingual f74125ed9aed0bb9e9619e2a65610a03   | TXT, 18.11 KB
Stata German 040a169b1d7edd43bf93a93eee4feae3   | TXT, 18.11 KB
Stata English 5c6cbdd0b3ae05e8e7ead819113217ee   | TXT, 18.11 KB
SPSS German b6b0f3c5e0640621018610fdee9aa5ec   | TXT, 18.11 KB
SPSS English 9548052842b3dbf1dffe038b19abb8ba   | TXT, 18.11 KB
SAS German cf24e8ab93ee0d41bf83c72fe264a318   | TXT, 20.23 KB
SAS English de3ffe8c282e272b1759452bc7aeb06c   | TXT, 20.23 KB
CSV 55d8d8ad4496497a85d9893ecab305f1   | TXT, 18.11 KB
GGKBOU 9c04b470ac58bc648c1eeae1053bc054   | TXT, 140 Byte
GGKBOU English 74d52f8f38388b508fe85aadd9a05499   | TXT, 140 Byte
Teaching version
Stata German (teaching)           | TXT, 18.11 KB
Stata English (teaching)      | TXT, 18.11 KB
SPSS German (teaching)   | TXT, 18.11 KB
SPSS English (teaching)   | TXT, 18.11 KB
SAS German (teaching)   | TXT, 20.13 KB
SAS English (teaching)   | TXT, 20.13 KB
Distribution format SOEPlong
zip file
all files
Stata bilingual (long) 008a7040e1e77666c40284b2361c6a6c   | TXT, 0.77 KB
Stata German (long) e186efb2a24d06fd0d4b8a5173716177   | TXT, 0.77 KB
Stata English (long) e49fcd648afc46a44a2e2b2365ff6120   | TXT, 0.77 KB
SPSS German (long) 9ff2a34e2775395e435fe2eec9237195   | TXT, 0.77 KB
SPSS English (long) ea000e52a5430744ebacacca760e6583   | TXT, 0.77 KB
SAS German (long) 67cc6d034b8da7b7dbab009b749d57e5   | TXT, 0.96 KB
SAS English (long) 5afbede12fa8f0d71a85fe2862057b68   | TXT, 0.96 KB
CSV (long) 71ec745d7d7ff3cf5dd46954764de99d   | TXT, 0.77 KB

Publications using this file should refer to the above DOI infoFind an explanation on the usage of DOI here.and cite following references

  • Goebel, Jan, Markus M. Grabka, Stefan Liebig, Martin Kroh, David Richter, Carsten Schröder, and Jürgen Schupp. 2019. The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP). Jahrbücher für Nationalökonomie und Statistik (Journal of Economics and Statistics) 239 (2), 345-360. (

If you do not exclude the cases of the migration samples in your analysis, then please also cite the following reference

  • Herbert Brücker, Martin Kroh, Simone Bartsch, Jan Goebel, Simon Kühne, Elisabeth Liebau, Parvati Trübswetter, Ingrid Tucci & Jürgen Schupp (2014): The new IAB-SOEP Migration Sample: an introduction into the methodology and the contents. SOEP Survey Paper 216 (PDF, 444.25 KB), Series C. Berlin, Nürnberg: DIW Berlin.

If you do not exclude the cases of the refugee samples in your analysis, please also cite: IAB-BAMF-SOEP survey of refugees (M3-M5), data for the years 2016-2021,

  • Herbert Brücker, Nina Rother, Jürgen Schupp. 2017. IAB-BAMF-SOEP Befragung von Geflüchteten 2016. Studiendesign, Feldergebnisse sowie Analysen zu schulischer wie beruflicher Qualifikation, Sprachkenntnissen sowie kognitiven Potenzialen. IAB Forschungsbericht 13/2017.

If you use data from the SOEP-LEE2 surveys, please also cite:

  • Matiaske, W., Schmidt, T. D., Halbmeier, C., Maas, M., Holtmann, D., Schröder, C., Böhm, T., Liebig, S., and Kritikos, A. S. (2023). SOEP-LEE2 : Linking Surveys on Employees to Employers in Germany. Journal of Economics and Statistics Data Observer, 1–14.

If you would like to refer more specifically, please also cite:

  • Schröder, Carsten, Johannes König, Alexandra Fedorets, Jan Goebel, Markus M. Grabka, Holger Lüthen, Maria Metzing, Felicitas Schikora, and Stefan Liebig. 2020. The economic research potentials of the German Socio-Economic Panel study. German Economic Review 21 (3), 335-371. (
  • Giesselmann, Marco, Sandra Bohmann, Jan Goebel, Peter Krause, Elisabeth Liebau, David Richter, Diana Schacht, Carsten Schröder, Jürgen Schupp, and Stefan Liebig. 2019. The Individual in Context(s): Research Potentials of the Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) in Sociology. European Sociological Review 35 (5), 738-755. (
  • Jacobsen, Jannes, Magdalena Krieger, Felicitas Schikora, and Jürgen Schupp. 2021. Growing Potentials for Migration Research using the German Socio-Economic Panel Study. Jahrbücher für Nationalökonomie und Statistik 241 (4), 527-549. (
  • Fedorets, Alexandra, Stefan Kirchner, Jule Adriaans, and Oliver Giering. 2022. Data on Digital Transformation in the German Socio-Economic Panel. Jahrbücher für Nationalökonomie und Statistik 242 (5-6), 691-705. (

1984 - 2015 (Welle BF)

  • BIOCOUPLY and BIOMARSY:  By mistake in the first version of the data delivery wrong data were uploaded for the two datasets. This version contains the correct datasets.
  • NACE in BFP and BFPGEN: A user reported implausible values for the variables BFP55_NACE and NACE15 containing information on the current job's industry. In this version the information is updated after a bug in the script has been fixed.
  • Scale shift in BFP: In the v32 data release, the scales in BFP on the probability of specific events occurring in working life, which in previous years had been coded from 0-100 at 10-point intervals, were given on a scale from 0-10 for the CAPI and CAWI interviews. This inconsistency was corrected in the update adapting the scales to the previously used coding: scales from bfp4201, bfp4202, bfp4203, bfp7201, bfp7202, and bfp7203 were multiplied by 10 where bfpinta = 9 or 10; also, one case in bfp7201 was changed from 4 to 40 where bfpinta = 8.

Individual (PAPI) 2015: Field-de Field-en Var-de Var-en
Household 2015: Field-de Field-en Var-de Var-en
Biography (PAPI) 2015: Field-de Var-de Var-en
Youth (16-17 year-olds) 2015: Field-de Var-de Var-en
Pre-Teen (11-12 year-olds) 2015: Field-de
Mother and Child (Newborns) 2015: Field-de
Mother and Child (2-3-year-olds) 2015: Field-de
Mother and Child (5-6-year-olds) 2015: Field-de
Parents and Child (7-8-year-olds) 2015: Field-de
Mother and Child (9-10-year-olds) 2015: Field-de
Deceased Individual 2015: Field-de

Please find all sample specific questionnaires of this year and all questionnaires of previous years on this site

1) Handgreifkraftmessung im Sozio-oekonomischen Panel (SOEP) 2006 und 2008

2) The new IAB-SOEP Migration Sample: an introduction into the methodology and the contents

3) The Request for Record Linkage in the IAB-SOEP Migration Sample

4) Flowcharts for the Integrated Individual-Biography Questionnaire of the IAB-SOEP Migration Sample 2013

5) The Measurement of Labor Market Entries with SOEP Data: Introduction to the Variable EINSTIEG_ARTK

6) Job submission instructions for the SOEPremote System at DIW Berlin – Update 2014

7) SOEP 2015 – Informationen zu den SOEP-Geocodes in SOEP v32

8) Editing and Multiple Imputation of Item Non-response in the Wealth Module of the German Socio-Economic Panel

9) Die Vercodung der offenen Angaben zu den Ausbildungsberufen im Sozio-Oekonomischen Panel

10) Das Studiendesign der IAB-BAMF-SOEP Befragung von Geflüchteten

11) Scales Manual IAB-BAMF-SOEP Survey of Refugees in Germany – revised version

12) SOEP 2010 – Preparation of data from the new SOEP consumption module: Editing, imputation, and smoothing

13) SOEP Scales Manual (updated for SOEP-Core v32.1)

14) Kognitionspotenziale Jugendlicher - Ergänzung zum Jugendfragebogen der Längsschnittstudie Sozio-oekonomisches Panel (SOEP)

15) Die Vercodung der offenen Angaben zur beruflichen Tätigkeit nach der International Standard Classification of Occupations 2008 (ISCO08) - Direktvercodung - Vorgehensweise und Entscheidungsregeln bei nicht eindeutigen Angaben

16) Die Vercodung der offenen Angaben zur beruflichen Tätigkeit nach der Klassifikation der Berufe 2010 (KldB 2010): Vorgehensweise und Entscheidungsregeln bei nicht eindeutigen Angaben

17) Multi-Itemskalen im SOEP Jugendfragebogen

18) Zur Erhebung des adaptiven Verhaltens von zwei- und dreijährigen Kindern im Sozio-oekonomischen Panel (SOEP)

19) Dokumentation zum Entwicklungsprozess des Moduls „Einstellungen zu sozialer Ungleichheit“ im SOEP (v38)

20) SOEP-CoV: Project and Data Documentation

21) Missing Income Data in the German SOEP: Incidence, Imputation and its Impact on the Income Distribution

22) SOEP-Core v34 – PFLEGE: Documentation of Generated Person-level Long-term Care Variables

23) SOEP 2006 – TIMEPREF: Dataset on the Economic Behavior Experiment on Time Preferences in the 2006 SOEP Survey

24) Assessing the distributional impact of "imputed rent" and "non-cash employee income" in microdata : Case studies based on EU-SILC (2004) and SOEP (2002)

25) SOEP-Core v36: Codebook for the EU-SILC-like panel for Germany based on the SOEP

All documentation for filtering can be found on this page