European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions - Access to microdata

European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC)

Information on data details relevant for research project proposals

Age: top coded 80y and above
Year of birth: recoded: year of survey minus 81 and below
Region: NUTS 1 level 
Year of immigration: Grouped into 5-year classes
Country of birth: recoded 'LOC', 'EU', 'OTH'
Citizenship: recoded 'LOC', 'EU', 'OTH'
ISCED: highest level attained, top coded 500 and above
NACE: NACE (Rev.2) 2 digit-level recoded into sections 
Income variables: in euro

Note: HOUSEHOLD IDs are randomised in cross-sectional datasets to prevent respondents from being tracked across time or from being linked witth longitudinal data.

The anonymisation rules applied to scientific use files depend on the EU-SILC data type (cross-sectional or longitudinal), country and wave. 

Description of the dataset

The EU Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC) aim to collect timely and comparable cross-sectional and longitudinal data on income, poverty, social exclusion and living conditions

The EU-SILC project was launched in 2003 based on a 'gentlemen's agreement' between 6 Member States (Belgium, Denmark, Greece, Ireland, Luxembourg and Austria) and Norway. The legal basis entered into force in 2004 and now covers all EU countries plus Iceland, Norway and Switzerland; some other countries participate on the voluntary basis.

EU-SILC provides two types of data:

  • Cross-sectional data over a given time or a certain time period with variables on income, poverty, social exclusion and other living conditions
  • Longitudinal data on individual-level changes over time, observed periodically over a 4-year period.

Information on social exclusion and housing conditions is collected mainly at household level, while labour, education and health information is obtained from individuals aged 16 and over. Income variables at detailed component level are also mainly collected from individuals.

EU-SILC scientific use files (SUFs)

EU-SILC scientific use files (SUFs) contain partially anonymised microdata: cross-sectional and longitudinal. Methodological guidelines describe EU-SILC variables as being transmitted to Eurostat. The differences between the original database (as defined in the guidelines) and the scientific use files are described separately for cross-sectional and longitudinal SUFs:

The complete set of guidelines and anonymisation rules are provided with the data.

The Data availability table shows the latest and planned releases of EU-SILC scientific use files.

EU-SILC based data

EU-SILC data are used to monitor poverty and social inclusion as part of the European Semester - the framework for coordinating economic policies across the EU. A broader set of indicators, which also build on numerous EU-SILC data, make up the Joint Assessment Framework.

EU-SILC data also provide quantitative evidence for monitoring the implementation of the social protection and inclusion dimension of the European Pillar of Social Rights, provide data for the Social Protection Performance Monitor and are used in the context of the Open Method of Coordination on social inclusion and social protection.

All statistics under the Income and Living conditions domain in the Eurostat database are EU-SILC data.

EU-SILC microdata releases with digital object identifier (DOI) number

  • EU-SILC 2022 releases:
  • EU-SILC 2021 releases:
    • Release 1 - in April 2021 and containing cross-sectional data up to 2019 and longitudinal data up to 2019: 
    • Release 2 - in November 2021 and containing cross-sectional data up to 2020 and longitudinal data up to 2019: 
  • EU-SILC 2020 releases: 
  • No DOI number for previous EU-SILC releases