How to cite data sources

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Using the citation standards established by DataCite, there are a number of mandatory and optional elements that are to be included in your citation.

With these elements in place, the generic citation format would appear as follows:

Creator[creator](PublicationYear): Title. Version. Publisher[publisher]. ResourceType. Approver(Year). Identifier

To aid you in developing your data citations, you will find a Table below outlining each element, followed by specific citation examples for each data source.

 

Elements

Description and instructions

Requirement

Example

Identifier

The Identifier is a unique string that identifies a resource, and typically takes the form of a Digital Object Identifier (DOI). For the purposes of citing data provided by PopData, a link to PopData's website will be sufficient.

Mandatory*

http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data

Creator

The main researchers and/or organizations involved in producing the data, or the authors of the publication, in priority order.

Mandatory*

BC Ministry of Health
WorkSafeBC

Title

A name or title by which a resource is known.

Mandatory*

Medical Services Plan (MSP) Payment Information File
PharmaCare
Discharge Abstract Database (Hospital Separations)
Home & Community Care (Continuing Care)
Mental Health
Consolidation File (MSP Registration & Premium Billing)
PharmaNet
BC Cancer Agency Registry Data

Publisher

A holder of the data. In the case of data sets, "publish" is understood to mean making the data available to the community of researchers.

Mandatory*

PharmaNet titles - BC Ministry of Health

All other titles - Population Data BC

Publication year

The year the data was published, not the date range for observations in the data set. Data sets are published by PopData in ‘Collections’. Researchers can contact PopData for the data set publication year for a given PopData Collection.

Mandatory*

YYYY

Version

Version number of the resource. Data sets are published by PopData in ‘Collections’. Researchers can contact PopData for the data set version for a given PopData Collection.

Optional

VX (where X is the version number)

Resource type

The general type of a resource.

Optional

Data Extract

Approver (year)

The executive and/or authority who grants access to the data. Typically this role resides within the Creator's organization. The approval year must also be included and can be obtained from PopData.

Mandatory*

BC Ministy of Health titles - MOH (YYYY)

PharmaNet titles prior to May 2012 - PharmaNet Stewardship Committee (YYYY)

PharmaNet titles after May 2012 - Data Stewardship Committee (YYYY)

Human Early Learning Partnership, Vancouver, BC: University of British Columbia, School of Population and Public Health

 

*These elements are currently mandatory for all Data Stewards. Note that the ‘Creator’ element is not considered mandatory by the BC Cancer Agency.

Applying this format to specific data requests, the following examples illustrate what the final data citations might look like (note that the publication year, approval year, and version elements would need to be revised and/or removed as needed in the final citations):

BC Cancer Agency

BC Ministry of Health

  • British Columbia Ministry of Health [creator] (2011): Medical Services Plan (MSP) Payment Information File. V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. MOH (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data
  • British Columbia Ministry of Health [creator] (2011): PharmaCare. V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. MOH (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data
  • Canadian Institute for Health Information [creator] (2011): Discharge Abstract Database (Hospital Separations). V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. MOH (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data
  • British Columbia Ministry of Health [creator] (2011): Home & Community Care (Continuing Care). V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. MOH (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data
  • British Columbia Ministry of Health [creator] (2011): Mental Health. V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. MOH (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data
  • British Columbia Ministry of Health [creator] (2011): Consolidation File (MSP Registration & Premium Billing). V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. MOH (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data

In cases where a researcher requested data that does not reside in Population Data BC’s internal holdings (e.g., PharmaNet), the BC Ministry of Health would need to be cited as both the creator and publisher of the data.

BC Vital Statistics Agency

  • BC Vital Statistics Agency [creator] (2011): Vital Statistics Births. V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. BC Vital Statistics Agency (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data
  • BC Vital Statistics Agency [creator] (2011): Vital Statistics Stillbirths. V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. BC Vital Statistics Agency (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data
  • BC Vital Statistics Agency [creator] (2011): Vital Statistics Marriages. V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. BC Vital Statistics Agency (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data
  • BC Vital Statistics Agency [creator] (2011): Vital Statistics Deaths. V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract BC Vital Statistics Agency (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data

Citizenship and Immigration Canada

  • Citizenship and Immigration Canada [creator] (2011): CIC Permanent Residents File. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. CIC (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data

Human Early Learning Partnership

  • Human Early Learning Partnership [creator] (2011): Early Development Instrument. V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. Human Early Learning Partnership. Vancouver, BC: University of British Columbia, School of Population and Public Health (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data

Perinatal Services BC

PharmaNet

  • BC Ministry of Health [creator] (2011): PharmaNet. V2. BC Ministry of Health [publisher]. Data Extract. Data Stewardship Committee (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data

Statistics Canada Income Band

Statistics Canada [creator] (2009): Statistics Canada Income Band Data. Catalogue Number: 13C0016. Population Data BC [publisher]. Data Extract. Population Data BC (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data

WorkSafeBC

  • WorkSafeBC [creator] (2011): WorkSafeBC Claims and Firm Level Files. V2. Population Data BC [publisher]. Linked Data Set. WorkSafeBC (2011). http://www.popdata.bc.ca/data

Page last revised: September 27, 2017