NYU Libraries has been providing access to a range of Gallup public opinion polling data through the Gallup Analytics tool and the Gallup Poll interface. With these tools, users can access public opinion data and export aggregate data at the country level.
Now, thanks to a new data license acquisition by the Libraries, individuals in the NYU community can access Gallup World Poll and U.S. Daily Tracking data at the respondent level, which provides a much-enhanced ability to trace connections between concepts and countries.
What is Gallup World Poll and U.S. Daily Tracking?
Before requesting access to Gallup World Poll or U.S. Daily Tracking respondent-level data, it helps to know a little about these surveys and the data associated with them. According to Gallup, the data are developed by survey collectors who call people in countries that have high access to telephones. Or, in the case of countries that have low access to phones, survey staff actually go on the ground and ask questions relating to economic confidence, quality of life, food access, freedom of media, practice of religion, and other core indicators. Note that the exact text of each question and the exact place its asked can vary; not every question is asked in the same place each year, and the phrasing of each question is meant to approximate a common meaning across language and culture. Please let us know if you’d like to see the World Poll Methodology, and we can provide a copy of it.
The U.S. Daily Tracking poll works similarly. 350 days per year, 1000 random U.S. adults are asked questions pertaining to economic confidence and quality of life. See the full description of the survey here. In all, Gallup is one of the most comprehensive and well-documented public opinion surveys that exists, and having full access to the respondent-level data is a great step for the NYU community.
Access Instructions for Gallup World Poll
In order to access respondent-level data for Gallup World Poll, you first need to be a current NYU faculty, student, or staff member and create an account with Gallup’s World Poll Reference Tool. The Reference Tool is not the source of the data itself but instead a search mechanism to discover which questions were asked in specific countries during specific years. With this information, the Data Services team can identify and extract relevant data for your project. Refer to the World Poll Reference Tool Guidebook for instructions on creating an account and performing searches.
There are several ways you can discover which questions or data is available. You can search by place (country), year, and theme or topic. Let’s use the World Poll as an example. Say you are interested in researching the concept of happiness in the world. You can enter a keyword search for “happiness”:It helps to enter keywords that are liable to be included in the text of a question itself. Once you discover relevant question(s), you can expand the interface and see the specific QTAG, study completion dates, and countries covered. For the sake of ease, you can even export information on question coverage into a .CSV.
To help the Data Services team access the subset of data that you need, all you have to do from here is get back to us with the following specific information:
- QTAG (e.g., WP6878)
- Dates (e.g., 2008-2012)
- Countries (e.g., United States, Canada, United Kingdom, France)
Note: Indicators like gender, which may be useful, exist as their own question QTAGs, so you may want to request the inclusion of these for more robust analysis. Once we have this information, we will compile a data extract and deliver it to you.
Access Instructions for Gallup U.S. Daily Tracking
Getting access to respondent-level data from the Gallup U.S. Daily Tracking survey requires a slightly different process. There is no comparable discovery tool for U.S. Daily Tracking poll questions; instead, users are encouraged to search in the Gallup Analytics portal. Within this portal, you can drill down to specific daily questions that are nested within a range of broader categories like Religion & Ethics, Quality of Life, Health, Well-being, Government & Politics, and more.
Once you’ve identified a specific question that has data, just let us know what it is, which states you’re interested in, and through what years? Our coverage spans between 2008 and 2016. We are also happy to provide the methodology for the U.S. Daily Tracking poll upon request.
To help make working with the data a little easier once you’ve gotten access to it, we’ve generated some codebooks to interpret the variables and range of answers within each question. Note that these change over time, so refer to the codebooks below for each year.
Note that we receive batch updates of data once per quarter for the U.S. Daily Tracking set and once per year (usually around late January) for the WorldPoll set. The update in January would cover the previous year.
If you have any questions about accessing Gallup’s respondent-level data for World Poll or the U.S. Daily Tracking at NYU, don’t hesitate to reach out to Data Services (firstname.lastname@example.org).