Skip to Main Content

Primary Source Materials in China

Researching special collections and archives in or about China? This site will describe both physical and digital repositories.

China Datasets Archive 2.0

The data are curated by Lin Hong, Center for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence ( and Yun Dai, Library (

The China Datasets Archive 2.0 has an exclusive focus on China, mostly collected from surveys, Chinese administrations, major data portals, and webs.

The datasets presented here should either have open access to the public, or require minimal registration (a single step of logging in), or at the most ask users to fill in an application form for permission.

The data can be accessed as either downloadable microdata, online analysis tools, or aggregate statistics. 

Gazetteers, Maps, and GIS data about China

  • NYU Library's guide to maps and GIS data of China
  • China DCW GIS Data: Basic DCW (Digital Chart of the World) GIS datasets have been prepared for use with Robert Hartwell "China Historical Studies" datasets.
  • China Local Gazetteers: provides detailed geographic and historical records of provinces, prefectures, cities, and smaller district administration units. Contents cover historical as well as contemporary facts related to the geographical areas, concerning general surveys, economy, public finance, governance, public security, urban and rural development, agriculture, industry, transportation, business, natural science, social science, education, culture and sports, public health, etc.
  • Virtual Shanghai is a platform of 19th century to present, including documents, maps, photos, and cartographic tools for spatial analysis and real-time mapping.

Data Research and Statistics about China

Visit NYU Library's international data collections, too.  

  • CEIC data screenshot of opened housing data menu and one graphCEIC Data covers general and specific stats about China: from social services to the census at the local, regional, and national levels. 





  • Homepage World Bank, search bar and menuThe World Bank offers plenty of data and economic information on various subjects for many countries including China. It is free and you can also search by topic or country and get the microdata or statistics to create new research topics. There are external partners contributing data files to the site.