30 of The Best Free Data Sources to Inform Your Content Creation and Ideation


If you Google ‘best free data sources’ you will find a raft of articles based on this theme but in my experience, many of these lists are bloated with obscure and unnecessary sites.

To save your time wading through a lot of fluff I have distilled the usual round of 50+ or 90+ links to the core sources of data that are your starting point to find datasets of significant value for your content production.

Citing statistics and facts from credible sources will elevate any content piece and a visualisation of a data set of real interest to your intended audience offers the perfect illustration to a piece of content or as a standalone asset.

Creating your own survey is always the first preference – if you have the budget and means – so that you have something unique to offer but a data set from a trusted and credible source is also a worthy basis.

All of the sources below are your starting point to finding the data you need to supplement your content production.


30 of The Best Data Sources in the UK/US

Government

Data.gov.uk
Since 2010 data.gov.uk has been helping people to find and use open government data, and supporting government publishers to maintain data.

ons.gov.uk
The UK’s largest independent producer of official statistics and the recognised national statistical institute of the UK.

Data.gov
The home of the U.S. Government’s open data

UK Data Service
A comprehensive resource funded by the ESRC to support researchers, teachers and policymakers who depend on high-quality social and economic data.

European Union Open Data Portal
The European Union Open Data Portal (EU ODP) gives you access to open data published by EU institutions and bodies.

Eurostat
Eurostat is the statistical office of the European Union situated in Luxembourg. Its mission is to provide high quality statistics for Europe.

US Census Bureau
The Census Bureau’s mission is to serve as the leading source of quality data about the nation’s people and economy.


Worldwide

Google Public Data
The Google Public Data Explorer makes large datasets easy to explore, visualize and communicate. As the charts and maps animate over time, the changes in the world become easier to understand.

Google trends
Google Trends is a public web facility of Google Inc., based on Google Search, that shows how often a particular search-term is entered relative to the total search-volume across various regions of the world, and in various languages.

UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations based in Paris.

The World Factbook
The World Factbook, also known as the CIA World Factbook, is a reference resource produced by the Central Intelligence Agency with almanac-style information about the countries of the world.

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
One of the key tasks of UNODC is to produce and disseminate accurate drugs and crime statistics at the international level. UNODC also works to strengthen national capacity to produce, disseminate and use drugs and crime statistics within the framework of official statistics.

UNData
UNdata is an Internet search engine, retrieving data series from statistical databases provided by the UN System. UNdata was launched in February 2008.

Dataportals.org
A Comprehensive List of Open Data Portals from Around the World


Academic

Google Scholar
Google Scholar is a freely accessible web search engine that indexes the full text or metadata of scholarly literature across an array of publishing formats and disciplines.

Pew Research Center’s Internet Project
The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, a nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization, provides free data and analysis on the social.

Uk Data Service
The UK’s largest collection of social, economic and population data resources


Economic

International Monetary Fund (IMF)
The IMF publishes a range of time series data on IMF lending, exchange rates and other economic and financial indicators. Manuals, guides, and other material on statistical practices at the IMF, in member countries, and of the statistical community at large are also available.

Google Finance
Google Finance was a website launched on March 21, 2006, by Google. The service featured business and enterprise headlines for many corporations including their financial decisions and major news events.

World Bank Open Data
This site is designed to make World Bank data easy to find, download, and use.


Health

NHS Digital
NHS Digital (formerly HSCIC) uses information and technology to improve health and care.

Global Health Observatory (GHO)
Part of WHO, The Global Health Observatory theme pages provide data and analyses on global health priorities.

US Food & Drug Administration (FDA)
The Food and Drug Administration is a federal agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, one of the United States federal executive departments.

HealthData.gov
This site is dedicated to making high value health data more accessible to entrepreneurs, researchers, and policy makers in the hopes of better health outcomes for all.


Public Opinion

YouGov
YouGov is a community of 4 million people around the world who share their views. We analyse this information and publish selected findings every day on our website.

Gallup
We empower you to use data for real transformation. Through analytics and advice, we provide leaders with a road map for understanding and unlocking the full potential of individuals, teams and organizations.

Roper Center for Public Opinion Research
The Roper Center for Public Opinion Research at Cornell University is one of the world’s leading archives of social science data, specializing in data from public opinion surveys.


Misc

Million Song Dataset
The Million Song Dataset is a freely-available collection of audio features and metadata for a million contemporary popular music tracks.

Datasets Subreddit
Datasets for Data Mining, Analytics and Knowledge Discovery.

Statistica
Find statistics, consumer survey results and industry studies from over 22500 sources on over 60000 topics on the internet’s leading statistics database.

Google Public Data Explorer
Google Public Data Explorer provides public data and forecasts from a range of international organizations and academic institutions including the World Bank, OECD, Eurostat and the University of Denver.