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EU Statistics on Income and Living Conditions


Data description

EurostatEU-SILC is a cross-sectional and longitudinal sample survey, coordinated by Eurostat, based on data from the European Union member states. EU-SILC provides data on income, poverty, social exclusion and living conditions in the European Union. EU-SILC stands for 'European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions.' The EU-SILC November 2020 release extended data coverage to 2019. There are two data scopes:

  • Cross-sectional data pertaining to fixed time periods, with variables on income, poverty, social exclusion and living conditions, and
  • Longitudinal data pertaining to individual-level changes over time, usually observed over four years.

Details of the database are on the Eurostat EU-SILC resource page. 

Social exclusion and housing-condition observations are collected at household level. Income data is collected at personal level, with some components included in the 'Household' section. Labour, education and health observations only apply to persons aged 16 or older.

EU-SILC was established to provide data on structural indicators of social cohesion (at-risk-of-poverty rate, S80/S20 and gender pay gap) and to provide relevant data for the two 'open methods of coordination' in the field of social inclusion and pensions in Europe.


Time period

EU-SILC was updated in November 2020. Eurostat periodically issues revisions of earlier waves. Dates of revisions are indicated below, where applicable.

  • EU-SILC 2019 cross-sectional (November 2020)
  • EU-SILC 2018 longitudinal (November 2020)
  • EU-SILC 2017 cross-sectional (April 2019)
  • EU-SILC 2017 longitudinal (April 2019)
  • EU-SILC 2016 cross-sectional (November 2017)
  • EU-SILC 2016 longitudinal (April 2018)
  • EU-SILC 2015 cross-sectional (rev. 1 / June 2017)
  • EU-SILC 2015 longitudinal (June 2017)
  • EU-SILC 2014 cross-sectional (rev. 2 / June 2017)
  • EU-SILC 2014 longitudinal (rev.1 / June 2017)
  • EU-SILC 2013 cross-sectional (rev.3 / June 2017)
  • EU-SILC 2013 longitudinal (rev.3 / June 2017)
  • EU-SILC 2012 cross-sectional (rev.4 / June 2017)
  • EU-SILC 2012 longitudinal (rev.4 / June 2017)
  • EU-SILC 2011 cross-sectional (rev.5 / June 2017)
  • EU-SILC 2011 longitudinal (rev.4 / August 2016)
  • EU-SILC 2010 cross-sectional (rev.5 / June 2015)
  • EU-SILC 2010 longitudinal (rev.4 / August 2014)
  • EU-SILC 2009 cross-sectional (rev.6 / June 2015)
  • EU-SILC 2009 longitudinal (rev.3 / April 2013)
  • EU-SILC 2008 cross-sectional (rev.6 / June 2015)
  • EU-SILC 2008 longitudinal (rev.3 / June 2012)
  • EU-SILC 2007 cross-sectional (rev.4 / March 2011)
  • EU-SILC 2007 longitudinal (rev.3 / March 2011)
  • EU-SILC 2006 cross-sectional (rev.1 / March 2010)
  • EU-SILC 2006 longitudinal (February 2008)
  • EU-SILC 2005 cross-sectional (rev.1 / September 2009)
  • EU-SILC 2005 longitudinal (February 2008)
  • EU-SILC 2004 cross-sectional (rev.3 / June 2015)

The data dossier is structured as follows:
- Data: Cross-sectional
- Data: Longitudinal
- Documentation
- Metadata (for all waves)

Support links

Details of the database are on the Eurostat EU-SILC resource page.

GESIS (Leibnitz/Mannheim) provides transfer routines from .csv to Stata and SPSS, and tools for identifying EU-SILC variables by type of data, reference period, unit of observation and mode of collection.

Create an EU Login for full access to listserv and other support services (EU-SILC CIRCABC support). The application procedure for EU-SILC data access is described in the next paragraph.


How to access data

Current EUI members can apply for access to EU-SILC micro data by following the instructions below. The Eurostat application process can take up to two months, due to clearing procedures with EU member state statistical agencies. The EUI is a Eurostat-recognised research entity.

  • Complete the Library's Micro Data Registration Form (selecting 'EU-SILC' in the dropdown menu)
  • The EUI researcher - or Principal Investigator (or delegate in a research team) - must create an EU Login to apply for Eurostat micro data access
  • Special note: Eurostat informs that for EUI researchers - it is necessary to use a non-institutional (non-EUI) personal email account for the creation of the EU Login. (It is not necessary for all members of a research team to create an EU login - only the person submitting the application)
  • Project applications are made using the online Microdata Access Workflow Tool
  • Before completing the application, consult the Eurostat EU Statistics on Income and Living Conditions resource page for details of EU-SILC variables, reference years and population
  • The 'Principal Researcher' is normally a Professor or Post-doctoral fellow
  • The EUI Data Manager is Thomas Bourke
  • Write to [email protected] for (i) the Research Entity ID number and (ii) the description of the EUI's secure data environment
  • The names and EUI email contact details of all researchers on the project must be included in the form 
  • The applicant sends the data access application to Eurostat using the Microdata Access Workflow Tool
  • (After receipt of the application, the Eurostat technical unit may contact the Principal Investigator with preliminary feedback and/or requests for revision)
  • The submitter should monitor the EU Login account for updates regarding the application. (Library staff do not have access to individual EU Login accounts)
  • If the application is approved by Eurostat, the applicant should proceed as follows:
    • Print all documents
    • The Principal Investigator initials all pages of the application, and signs and dates the final page
    • The Data Manager ([email protected]) signs the application
    • Separate confidentiality declarations must be signed by (i) the applicant(s) (ii) the P.I. and (iii) the Data Manager. All researchers and assistants named in the project must sign a separate confidentiality declaration
    • The applicant must scan the documents and upload to the EU Login account
    • Click 'Send' to submit the documents
  • Eurostat confirms receipt
  • The Library provides access to the data.

Eurostat informs that no person(s) other than those named in the contract can access the data. Breach of contract conditions may lead to the withdrawal of the EUI's research entity recognition, and the potential loss of access to Eurostat micro data by other EUI scholars.

There is no off-campus access to micro data.

Short-term visitors to the EUI Library do not have access to micro data.

Member State statistical agencies and/or Eurostat reserve the right to decline access to EU-SILC data.

At the end of the project contract period, Eurostat will contact the P.I. requesting a signed confirmation of destruction of local copies/sub-sets of the data.

Publications based on the data should be reported via this online form.


Metadata support

The GESIS Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences maintains the Metadata for Official Statistics Support Portal for European micro data. Detailed metadata and documentation for EU-AES and other micro datasets are available.

The service is part of MISSY - the GESIS Microdata Information System - providing support for users of European micro data.

“MISSY pools a broad spectrum of metadata in one centralised resource. This includes information on series, such as access conditions or details on data collection in participating countries, as well as detailed information on variables such as frequencies, filter information or question wordings... Users can choose between systematic accesses via a series, the variable-over-time matrix which lists the availability of variables in table form or a thematically sorted access to all studies. Additionally selected variables can be visualised in a comparison table.”


Data Citation and disclaimer

Researchers must cite the source of EU-SILC data as follows:

"This study/report/paper is based on data from Eurostat, EU Statistics on Income and Living Conditions [reference year(s)]."

The following disclaimer must be added: "The responsibility for all conclusions drawn from the data lies entirely with the author(s)."


Related resources
  • EU-Labour Force Survey (EU-LFS) cross-sectional and longitudinal household sample survey. EU-LFS is collated by Eurostat from data provided by the EU member states, three EFTA countries and three EU-candidate countries. The database provides observations on labour market participation and persons outside the labour force
  • EU-Adult Education Survey (EU-AES) provides data on formal, non-formal and informal education and training in the European Union, covering a sample of persons from 25 to 64 years of age
  • EUROMOD, a micro-simulation model for EU tax and benefits' research, is available under the EUI's institutional contract with the University of Essex Institute for Social & Economic Research
  • Public use files for EU Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC) and EU Labour Force Survey (EU-LFS) are made available by Eurostat and CROS (Collaboration in Research and Methodology for Official Statistics) 
  • Aggregate data can be downloaded from the Eurostat data portal under Population and Social Conditions
  • European statistical data resources (EUI Library directory).


Data homepage

Contact: Thomas Bourke at [email protected]




Page last updated on 02 February 2021