Cite the data

Article Image

"Find it, use it, cite it"

Citing a dataset correctly is just as important as citing articles, books, images and websites - each dataset is a source of evidence to support your argument.

In the 'Why cite data' video below, experts from the University of Essex discuss why and how the research community should #CiteTheData.


We provide citations for every record and dataset version held in our Data Catalogue. Simply use the UK Data Service citation tool to copy and paste the correct citation (available in multiple formats) into any reference list.

citing data

For a quick overview, see our top ten tips to citing data.

Any publication, whether printed, electronic or broadcast, based wholly or in part on the data collections accessed through the UK Data Service must be accompanied by the correct citation and acknowledgement information.


  • Support reproducibility of your research and attribute credit to the researcher
  • Support data creators – we assign data a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) free of charge
  • Make identifying and finding data easier. The DOI will always link to the data even when its location changes
  • Citations enable tracking, measuring of impact, demonstrating use and value to funders and potential refunding
  • Funding bodies encourage the research community to establish data citation as the rule rather than the exception

ESRC award holders are expected to cite their data to encourage and facilitate data sharing under the terms of the ESRC Research Data Policy.

In the video below, the ICPSR explains how citing data benefits the research community in its 'Why should I cite data' video

Data Creators

Depositing data with the UK Data Service means the data is assigned a DOI. Using DOIs helps us all to follow the 'FAIR' Guiding Principles for scientific data management and stewardship – Findability, Accessibility, Interoperability and Reusability.


View our video tutorial on how to cite data obtained from the UK Data Service, including some of the methods we’ve used to try and make data citation and referencing as easy as possible for researchers.

For more information about the importance of data citation and the role of DOIs, see the ESRC data citation webpage and brochure Data Citation: what you need to know.

Read our blog Spotlight on #CiteTheData: Make the data count which discusses citation and the benefits it brings to researchers and research.

Back to top  

We expect to run as normal a service as possible during this COVID-19 (Coronavirus) emergency. Please visit our COVID-19 page for the latest information.


Related Links