Census of Population and Housing

2020 Census



The twenty fourth Decennial Census undertaken in 2020 is the most recent, and for the first time, households could respond online.  The data derived from it is available from the Census Bureau's data.censu.gov website

There only nine questions were asked.  Detailed statistical information previously collected by the long form is now being gathered through the American Community Survey

The resources listed below can help in locating current census data.  Please check the OSU Libraries’ catalog for location and availability where necessary.


Interactive Databases

data.census.gov. (United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census)

Tables, thematic maps, and reference maps.

GeoLytics. East Brunswick, New Jersey: GeoLytics, Inc., 2005-.

Census information 1970-2010.  Normalized data available. [Available by appointment only]

Missouri Census Data Center. (Missouri State Library.  University of Missouri. Center for Health Policy)

Census data from 1990-2010,  including quick links to ACS data for the United States and by state.  Some parts are still under construction.

NHGIS - National Historical Geographic Information System.  (University of Minnesota, Minnesota Population Center)

Provides, free of charge, aggregate census data and GIS-compatible boundary files for the United States between 1790 and 2012.

ProQuest Statistical Abstract of the U.S. [Ann Arbor, Michigan]:  ProQuest.

Provides abstracts and indexes of statistical information from over 100,000 U.S. government publications from 1973, state and private sources from 1980, and approximately 2000 documents from international organizations from 1983. Incorporates ASI subject and keyword searching. Full text or web links provided for some citations.

Sage Data.

Also called Data-Plant Statistical Datasets, ProQuest Statistical Datasets, Lexis-Nexis Statistical Datasets, or Statistical Datasets.  Restricted to OSU Affiliates and users onsite in the library.  Provides access to statistical information from federal agencies, etc.  Coverage varies with statistical source

Social Explorer.  Bronxville, New York:  Social Explorer.  

Provides quick and easy access to current and historical census data and demographic information. The easy-to-use web interface lets users create maps and reports to illustrate, analyze, and understand demography and social change.

Statistics and Data Sets: Population and Housing

Data Sets section provides links to sites maintaining files that can be downloaded for local manipulation.



Geographical Resources

Geography – Reference Maps. (United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census)

Maps available for selected years by preselected topics.  Limited customization possible.

Geography - Relationship Files. (United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census)

These text files describe geographic relationships. There are two types of relationship files; those that show the relationship between the same type of geography over time (comparability) and those that show the relationship between two types of geography for the same time period. 

Interactive Maps. (United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census)

Interactive mapping tools from the Census Bureau.

The National Map. (United States Department of the Interior. USGS)  

Collaborative effort between the USGS and other Federal, State, and local partners with many uses ranging from recreation to scientific analysis to emergency response with aerial photographs, elevation information, geographic names, hydrography, boundaries, transportation networks, locations of structures, and land cover data


Web Resources

Data Tools and Apps. (United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census)

Links to census related databases, etc.  Titles released after June 23, 2014 are available from Publications.

Decennial Census of Population and Housing by Decades. (United States Department of Commerce.  Bureau of the Census)

Links to statistics and reports covering the Decennial Censuses from 1790-current

GPO Monthly Catalog

Locate census materials distributed to depository libraries since 1976. [Access restricted to OhioLINK members]

Publications by Topics. (United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census)

Publications, briefs and reports from the Census Bureau.  Selectable by topic and year.

Reports/Research – Census 2020. (Ohio. Development Services Agency)

Limited demographic information from the 2020 census specific to Ohio.

Subjects A- Z. (United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census)

An alphabetical listing of subjects with links to various censuses.


Census Derived Resources

Statistical Abstract of the United States. Washington, D.C.:  G.P.O., 1878- incomplete.  [Note as of October 2011, the Bureau of Census stopped publishing this title.  ProQuest took over publication.]

Online:  Current Issue  | Archived

Annual. Data drawn from a variety of sources including the Censuses of Population and Housing. Most tables are national, some state and metropolitan area tables. 


Other Resources

Research Databases List Arranged by Subject: Statistics and Data Sets. (The Ohio State University. The Ohio State University Libraries)


A list with links to of various statistical indexes and databases that OSUL subscribes to.

State Data Center Network. (United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census)

The SDC lead agencies organize a statewide network of coordinating and affiliate agencies. This network works in partnership with the Census Bureau through the Customer Liaison and Marketing Services Office (CLMSO) and the Census Bureau's 6 Regional Offices for data dissemination at the very local level.


Further Reading

The Census Bureau Must Correct Fundamental Cloud Security Deficiencies in Order to Better Safeguard the 2020 Decennial Census.  Final Report No. OIG-19-015-A.  U.S. Department of Commerce, Office of Inspector General, Office of Audit and Evaluation.  Washington, D.C.:   June 19, 2019.

Census Research Guide:  2020. (UC San Diego Library)  Background information on the 2020 Decennial census.

A Fair & Accurate Census. (Brennan Center for Justice)  Includes information on census basics, questions on who should be counted, confidentiality, legal issues surrounding the 2020 Decennial Census, etc.

Key Facts about the Quality of the 2020 Census.  D'Vera Cohn and Jeffrey S. Passel.  Pew Research Center, June 8, 2022.  Discusses data quality of the 2020 Census.  

Most Adults Aware of 2020 Census and Ready to Respond, but Don’t Know Key Details.  D’Vera Cohn, Anna Brown, and Scott Keeter.  Pew Research Center February 20, 2020.   Looks at what most adults know about the census and what they feel about the new online  option.<

Research Report:  Assessing Miscounts in the 2020 Census.  Diana Elliott, Rob Santos, Steven Martin, and Charmaine Runes.  Urban Institute, June 2019.

What the New Census Data Shows about Race Depends on How You Look at It.  Connie Hanshang Jin, Ruth Talbot, and Hansi Lo Wang.  NPR, August 13, 2021.  Discusses problems on how race data is reported.