Freedom to information is what all econometricians hope for - that is, readily accessible and reliable data that you don't have to pay for.
Canada's statistical agency, Statistics Canada, has finally come into line with most of its international counterparts by announcing that starting next year much of its data will be available for free. Thank goodness for that! Finally!
Tavia Grant's post in the Globe and Mail a couple of days ago sets out some of the details very nicely. If you're a user of StatsCan data, ranging from their CANSIM collection, to Census data, this is good news. It's especially good news if you're a non-academic used.
We're fond of saying that the econometric methods we use are only as good as the data we can access. True enough, but let's not forget that free data can still be used inappropriately, and are only as good as the econometric analysis they're subjected to.
© 2011, David E. Giles