Resources: Eurostat

A representative of Eurostat‘s media support team paid a visit to the office to talk us through their statistics database. It can be hard sometimes to locate specific stats on an unfamiliar website, particularly if you are up against a tight deadline, so it was good to get an overview of the type of data stored and the different ways you can search Eurostat.

  • Eurostat is the central store for EU and EFTA countries’ stats, the central institute of the European Statistics System
  • Data from NSIs go to Eurostat, are harmonised, they compile Euro aggregates, then disseminate (mainly web only)
  • Euro Indicators are regularly released economic indicators – they always cover the EU and sometimes extend further if comparable stats are available – unemployment, GDP, trade, inflation etc – deficit and debt released every April and Oct
  • Also release ad hocs as and when – GDP per capita, population, tax trends, the yearbook, for Women’s Day etc
  • Don’t cover Eurobarometer surveys (DG Comm), EU budget figures (DG Budget, Inforegio for regional figs), tax rates (DG Taxud – who has highest/lowest VAT etc)
  • Their remit is to report stats independently and neutrally, without a political agenda
  • Release calendar is issued every Oct
  • Time series usually go back to the 1990s across all countries, as that’s when the data was harmonised, but goes much further for some countries
  • DG Ecfin has time series data for some economic indicators but not complete as not comparable
  • Microdata isn’t on the site – could be used to identify individuals eg surveys; can get access for research purposes only

To use the site:

  • Country profiles (from home page) – compare a country to EU ave etc;  only most recent data; can then link to table of data to download
  • Data in Focus (from home page) – online PDF releases of topics of data; links to data files
  • Stats in Focus (from home page) – text, analysis as well as numbers; links to data files
  • Statistics tab - organised by themes and sub-themes; click on a theme, links down the side give related datasets; click through the hierarchy
  • Search – the homepage and the whole site – can search publications, datasets or metadata – or just search in the database

To use the Statistics Database:

  • go into pre-defined tables, click on topic, work through the hierarchy to get a table of data, access to maps, graphs, can set parameters and download
  • go into database, use the data tool to extract data; can set own parameters, display format etc
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