European Social Survey – Round 4 (2008-2009)

European Social Survey Central Co-ordinating Team


Changelog (Source release):

4.0 - 2011/02/02
*4th release

Changes from edition 3.0

Additional countries: Ireland, Lithuania.

Changes in data:
The harmonised education variables EDULVL, EDULVLP, EDULVLF, EDULVLM (7 categories) have been replaced with EDULVLA, EDULVLPA, EDULVLFA, EDULVLMA (5 categories). In addition, for Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russian Federation, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland and Ukraina additional European Survey version of ISCED has been produced for respondent (EISCED), partner (EISCEDP), father (EISCEDF) and mother (EISCEDM). For Estonia only EISCED for respondent has been produced.

Changes in country data:
The data in region variable REGIONHR have been replaced.

Changes in variables:
F32 HINCTNTA: The value labels have been changed to reflect the change in income measurement introduced in ESS4 - 2008.

3.0 - 2010/03/24
3rd release

Changes from edition 2.0
Additional countries: Croatia, Czech Republic, Greece, Latvia, Romania, Turkey, Ukraine.

Changes in country data:
Question G11 (IMPFREE) and G12 (IPHLPPL) asked to women, had been switched in the German questionnaire. The variables IMPFREE and IPHLPPL have now been corrected.

Minor amendments in household grid variables F4 (RSHIPA2) "second person in household: relationship to respondent" and (RSHIPA3) "third person in household: relationship to respondent". RSHIPA2 has been amended for two respondents, and RSHIPA3 has been amended for one respondent.

Administrative variables measuring the timing of the main and supplementary interview, variables INWDDS INWMMS INWYYS INWSHH INWSMM INWDDE INWMME INWYYE INWEHH INWEMM SUPQDD SUPQMM and SUPQYR, have been replaced. Variable INWTM “Interview length in minutes, main questionnaire” has been recalculated by the archive on the basis of the replaced variables.

2.0 - 2009/12/17
*2nd release

Changes from edition 1.0:

Additional countries: Hungary, Israel, Netherlands.
Slovakia now included in the integrated file.

1.0 - 2009/09/23
* 1st release

Includes data from Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russian Federation, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and United Kingdom.

Data from Slovakia are only available as a separate country file until design weights have been produced and added to their data.



UniData provides two kind of data access:

  • open data
    (all users can use the data - an expense allowance could be required)
  • restricted data
    (the data use is limited - see below)

Data Kind:
individual data

Time Dimensions:
longitudinal (trend repeated cross-section)

Round 4

Series Name:
ESS - European Social Survey

1.08 MB

The European Social Survey (ESS) is a European survey covering more than 20 nations. Its twin aims are: first, it wants to monitor and interpret the changes in attitudes and values of European citizens and investigate how they interact with the constantly evolving European institutions; second, the survey aims to improve and consolidate methods for cross-national surveys in Europe and beyond. The project is funded by the European Commission (inside the 5th Framework Programme), the European Science Foundation and academic funding bodies in each participating country.

The Round 4 questionnaire is divided into different sections:

  • Use of mass media (television, radio, press and Internet, use of the media to be informed about politics and current affairs) and trust in the neighbour
  • Politics, including: interest in politics, trust in politicians and institutions, participation to electoral vote, political participation, opinions on government and public services provided by the State, socio-political assessments/attitudes; Immigration and political asylum, including: attitudes, perceptions, preferences and knowledge of policies on immigration
  • Subjective well-being (including personal safety and health) and social exclusion; religion (religious affiliation, attendance at religious services); perceived discrimination, national and ethnic identity
  • Personal and social well-being, helping others, feelings in the last week, life satisfaction, satisfaction with work
  • Socio-demographic profile, including: composition of the family; sex, age, place of residence, education and employment of the respondent, partner and parents; household situation and income, civil status
  • Questions about human values (Shalom Schwarz scale).

Data are available for free (registration required). After logging in, please click on the green button download_arrow in the box at the right.

Keywords: , , , , , , , , ,

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Topic Classification:

  • ECONOMICS - income, property and investment/saving
  • LABOUR AND EMPLOYMENT - working conditions
  • POLITICS - mass political behaviour, attitudes/opinion
  • SOCIAL STRATIFICATION AND GROUPINGS - equality and inequality
  • SOCIETY AND CULTURE - cultural and national identity
  • SOCIETY AND CULTURE - religion and values
  • SOCIETY AND CULTURE - social behaviour and attitudes
  • Nations: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine

    Geographical Unit: region

    Analysis Unit: individual

    Universe: whole national population of 15 years and older

    Sample Procedure: about 2.000 for each country (59.000 individuals overall). Multi-stage stratified random sample (see the documentation)

    Weight: Weight used. Please read the documentation for any details

    Collection Mode: face to face interview, various methods of data collection for each country (please see the documentation)

    Collection Size: UniData supplies: 2 dataset in SPSS format (1 for all nations; 1 for Lithuania only); 1 questionnaire in PDF format (main and supplementary questionnaire); 14 documentation files in PDF format; 2 specific datasets in SPSS format (interviewer's questionnaire dataset and test variables dataset) (19 file)


    DDI Documentation:
    DDI Documentation

    Data Use Restriction:
    The data are available without restrictions, for not-for-profit purposes. User agrees to quote the data source in all publications using the information showed later. More information are available here.
    Source Contact: ESS Data archive - Norwegian Social Science Data Services (NSD)


    Data: ESS Round 4: European Social Survey Round 4 Data (2008). Data file edition 4.0. Norwegian Social Science Data Services, Norway – Data Archive and distributor of ESS data.

    Documentation: ESS Round 4: European Social Survey (2008): ESS-4 2008 Documentation Report. Edition 4.0. Bergen, European Social Survey Data Archive, Norwegian Social Science Data Services.

    Deposit Requirement:
    The user is obliged to quote all data and documents disseminated by UniData and used in the own publications, using the information previously showed. The user is also obliged to send UniData the bibliographic citations related to the publications where the requested data and documents are used.

    Neither the depositor nor UniData bear any responsibility for the analysis or interpretation of the data produced by the user.