Sources of Data
Below you can find links to several sources of data. Some categories are provided, although of course these are only suggestive.
There is a large archive of social science data available online at the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research, or ICPSR. You can click on the ICPSR page for a listing of the available data. To see the types of data on the site, go to "Search Full Data Holdings" and then choose "Browse our subject areas".
Many of the datasets can be downloaded freely, while others are restricted to authorized users. NYU is an authorized user, so you will be able to access the data once you have created an account. You will need to create the account while using a computer with an NYU IP address, so that ICPSR recognizes that you are an authorized user.
The ICPSR site includes codebooks along with their datasets. Most of the codebooks are available in machine-readable format and can easily be downloaded. A few, however, are available in hard copy only, and these must be ordered from ICPSR. In this case, contact the Politics Data Center staff so that the codebook can be requested for you. Note that this process can take up to several weeks.
Quality of Government Dataset
Very complete cross-country dataset compiled by the University of Gothenburg.
UK Data Archive
Electoral constituency-level database for several countries around the world.
Provides free access to a rich dataset of constituency election results from over 80 countries around the world, countries for which data are not easily available. From Andorra to Zambia, this site provides unusually complete data sets that include votes won by very small parties, independents, and frequently, candidate names that are difficult to locate. As an ongoing project, additional elections will be regularly added.