Data Collections

African Centre for Cities

The African Centre for Cities (ACC) is a research hub at the University of Cape Town that undertakes interdisciplinary research on urban environments. Datasets in this collection are from several collaborative ACC-based research projects.

African Centre of Excellence for Inequality Research

The African Centre of Excellence for Inequality Research (ACEIR) is a research grouping of eminent African scholars based Southern, East and West Africa. Participating institutions are the University of Cape Town (SALDRU), the University of Ghana, Legon, (ISSER), and the University of Nairobi (School of Economics). This collection highlights important datasets for poverty and inequality research for Southern African node researchers.

African Research Replication and Reproducibility Data

These datasets include data and code that underlie published research on South Africa and other African countries. The data and code are made available by authors and publishers to support replication, reproducibility, and transparency in African research


Afrobarometer is a research network that conducts public opinion surveys in African countries on democracy and governance. The surveys have been undertaken at periodic intervals since 1999. Afrobarometer coverage has increased over time. Round 1 (1999-2001) covered 7 countries and was later extended to 12 countries. Round 2 (2002-2004) covered 16 countries, Round 3 (2005-2006) 18, Round 4 (2008) 20, Round 5 (2011-2013) 34, Round 6 (2014-2015) 36, and Round 7 (2016-2018) 34.

ALPHA Network

The ALPHA (Analysing Longitudinal Population-based HIV/AIDS Data in Africa) Network is a collaboration among 10 longitudinal studies in Sub-Saharan Africa. These studies collect data on HIV infection alongside demographic, behavioural, socio-economic, and clinical data from residents of the study areas. The Network harmonises the data and conducts comparable and pooled analyses on HIV.

COVID-19 Vaccine Survey

The COVID-19 Vaccine Survey (CVACS) is a South African national panel study of individuals initially unvaccinated against COVID-19. Respondents are interviewed twice; in late 2021 and early 2022. The purpose of CVACS is to collect high quality, timely, and relevant information on facilitators and barriers to COVID-19 vaccine uptake - including vaccine hesitancy and access constraints - to contribute to the development of data-driven campaigns and programmes to increase COVID-19 vaccination uptake in South Africa.


DataDrive2030 is a South African based social enterprise that supports the collection and use of high-quality data to drive improved child outcomes in the first 6 years of life.

Democracy in Africa Research Unit

Datasets in the South African National Election Study series from the Democracy in Africa Research Unit at the University of Cape Town

Department of Basic Education

Data from the South African Department of Basic Education.

Financial Sector Deepening Zambia

FSD Zambia is a Zambian organisation working closely with key players throughout the economy to ensure that all Zambians are financially healthy, particularly the most excluded and under-served. We help rural families, women, youth, low income people, and other households in Zambia to understand and access a wide range of sustainable, comparable and affordable financial services. To expand financial inclusion, we collaborate with public and private sector institutions to make financial markets work better. FSD Zambia enhances trust between clients and suppliers of financial services by helping to increase their understanding, expand innovation, and lower costs. In this way all women, men, girls and boys can learn about, choose, and use a wide range of financial services according to their needs.

Gauteng City-Region Observatory

The Gauteng City-Region Observatory (GCRO) is a partnership of the University of Johannesburg, the University of the Witwatersrand, the Gauteng Provincial Government (GPG), and organised local government in Gauteng (SALGA-Gauteng). The GCRO’s page gives access to their biennial Quality of Life (QOL) survey. The survey measures the quality of life, socio-economic circumstances, attitudes to service delivery, and other characteristics of residents of the Gauteng City-Region to provide a rich information resource for policymakers and the public wanting to see where progress is being made, and where concerns remain.

Hungry Cities Partnership

The Hungry Cities Partnership (HCP) is an international network that conducts collaborative research, training and advocacy with the objective of providing innovative solutions to the challenge of building sustainable cities and policies and programmes that promote food security in cities. The Hungry Cities datasets provided here are from surveys of households and food outlets in 6 African Cities, Nairobi, Kenya; Maputo, Mozambique; Windhoek, Namibia and Cape Town, South Africa.

Institute for Social and Economic Research

This collection features historical data from an early survey, the Keiskammahoek Rural Survey (1947-1952) which records changes in rural Keiskammahoek from the establishment of the apartheid regime in 1948. The data was digitised from survey questionnaires held in the Corey Library at Rhodes University, in a collaborative project between DataFirst and the Neil Aggett Labour Studies Unit (NALSU) in the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) and the Corey Library.

Jet Education Services

JET Education Services is an independent non-profit that undertakes research on education outcomes in South Africa. JET works with government, the private sector, international development agencies and education institutions to improve the quality of education in South Africa and has collected data through a National Schools Effectiveness Study conducted in 2007-2009.

National Income Dynamics Study

The National Income Dynamics Study (NIDS), is the first national panel study in South Africa. NIDS is initiated and funded by the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation of the Government of South Africa. The survey project implementer is the Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit (SALDRU) at the University of Cape Town.

National Income Dynamics Study-Coronavirus Rapid Mobile Survey

The National Income Dynamics Study-Coronavirus Rapid Mobile (NIDS-CRAM) Survey was a telephonic follow up survey of a sub-sample of household residents from NIDS Wave 5 (2017) that was conducted during the pandemic period in South Africa in 2020-2021. The survey collected data on employment, hunger, migration, grant-receipt, and demographics, as well as COVID-19 risk perceptions and behaviour. The survey data will provide policy-makers and the public with rapid, reliable panel data on key measures of individual and household welfare.

NRSLR Programme Domestic Electrical Load Study

The Domestic Electrical Load Study data includes electricity meter readings and survey data from sampled SA households collected by the National Rationalised Specification Load Research (NRSLR) Programme. The NRSLR programme was a joint government-academia initiative which ran from 1994 to 2014.

Research ICT Africa

Datasets from surveys conducted by Research ICT Africa

Research on Open Educational Resources for Development

Qualitative datasets produced by the Research on Open Educational Resources for Development Project at the University of Cape Town

Research unit on the Economics of Excisable Products

The Research unit on the Economics of Excisable Products (REEP) at the University of Cape Town undertakes research on alcohol, unhealthy food and tobacco policies to help limit their consumption and prevent non-communicable diseases. Among others, REEP manages the Data on Aliments, Tobacco and Alcohol (DATA) in Africa Project which collects, archives and disseminate economic data on alcohol, unhealthy food and tobacco to assist research to support policies on these excisable products.

School of Built Environment and Development Studies

Datasets from the School of Built Environment and Development Studies at the University of KwaZulu-Natal

South African Audience Research Foundation

The All Media and Products Survey (AMPS) conducted by the South African Audience Research Foundation in the 1990s and up to 2015 measures the audiences of all traditional media in South Africa. Non-current versions of AMPS are made available for academic research only.

South African Time Series Data

This collection is a comprehensive set of time series datasets from South African government agencies and other sources.

Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit

Datasets produced by the Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit at the University of Cape Town

Statistics South Africa

Statistics South Africa is South Africa's national statistics agency. DataFirst shares Statistics South Africa's data and creates useful metadata to help researchers to use these official datasets.

Other Open Research Data

This collection comprises datasets from once-off Africa-focused social research of University Projects or Research Institutions around the world.


Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) and Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) datasets are from international assessments that monitor trends in student achievement in mathematics, science, and reading. Currently 70 countries participate in the assessments, which have been conducted at regular intervals since 1995

DataFirst Secure Research Data Centre

This collection shows restricted-access datasets in our Secure Research Data Centre at the University of Cape Town. This data is too sensitive to publish online. But the data is valuable for detailed policy analysis and is therefore made available in a secure space to accredited researchers.