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  • China Data Webinar: New Development of China Geo-Explorer

    China Data Webinar

    New Development of China Geo-Explorer

    Shuming Bao, Director of the China Data Institute

    April 25, 2019 at 1:00 PM EDT

    This webinar demonstrated the new design of China Geo-Explorer (http://china-data-online.com), a web-based spatial data system that provides easy access to a rich collection of unique, authoritative, and comprehensive information from government statistics, population and economic censuses, and many other data sources with more than 6,500 variables and 7 million business records of China. It also introduced some new data products and services, including the newly released “2018 China Administrative Boundary Maps” and the cloud based platform of “China Data Lab” project, and discuss the future plans for China data research, learning, and applications.

    Recorded webinar on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIcM99viwKL1lHj-IZpqPtw

    Qs & As for China Geo-Explorer

    Q: Is there any restriction to using the extracted vector data outside of China from China Geo-Explorer?

    A: No. All of those data from China Geo-Explorer are not confidential. Some restrictions may apply if those data are used for commercial purposes.

    Q: Does China Geo-Explorer only offer administrative boundary maps? Are there street data and POI elements?

    A: China Geo-Explorer offers administrative boundary maps at province, prefecture city, county and township levels as well as ZIP point maps. also provides more than 7 million firm level data records georeferenced at ZIP code level. It doesn’t offer street data or current POI data. OpenStreetMap can allow users to download some free street data and POI data contributed by volunteers.

    Q: Can we get the map in each year from 2000 to 2010?

    A: China Geo-Explorer offers several base maps for matching the census data. (2000, 2010 and comparable 2000-2010 census data). The China Data Institute does offer the yearly administrative boundary maps from 1949 to current (see details at https://chinadatacenter.net/Data/ServiceContent.aspx?id=2634).

    Q: Can you show the variables included in i.e. Population Census, Industrial Census?

    A: Users can find the list of those available variables under “Index Selection => Customized Report” in China Geo-Explorer or the list of variables from different data sources from https://chinadatacenter.net/Data/Services.aspx.

    Q: Are we able to download the data as map layers such as shapefile?

    A; Yes. China Geo-Explorer II allows users to export the maps with limited data in ArcGIS shapefiles.

    Q: If it provides any air pollution data (such as smog dispersion) across the country?

    A: There are several data sources for environment related studies: Statistical Datasheets, Monthly and Yearly Industrial Statistics, and Business Data related to potential pollution in China. Please find more related information from another webinar on the Spatial Research of Health and Environment with China Data (https://chinadatacenter.net/Learming/SeminarsContent.aspx?id=1104).

    Q: I just found that there is a problem with the administrative boundary at township level. For the City of Dali, the boundary of Manjiang District and Tianjing District doesn't look right. How may I solve this after exporting the shapefile?

    A: The township boundary maps in China Geo-Explorer are approximated maps since there is no official township boundary map which can match the census data of China. Our approximated township boundary maps were derived based on the location of townships and their areal size. The official township maps may be available for some regions (provinces, cities or counties), which may not match the census data. You need to make some adjustments to those real township boundary maps so that they can match the census data, which is always a challenge.

    Q: How do we get access to the data of China Geo-Explorer?

    A: The most cost effective way for data access is to subscribe to China Geo-Explorer. We also offer a free version of China Geo-Explorer at http://chinageoexplorer.com. You can also order the individual data products listed at https://chinadatacenter.net. https://www.chinageoexplorer.com/

    Q: How do I get a user ID?

    A: You can submit the order form (https://chinadatacenter.net/Order/Order.aspx) to office@chinadatacenter.net. We can usually set up your account on the same day your order form is received.

    Q: What is the cost of subscription?

    A: We offer academic memberships and non-academic memberships, institutional memberships (access by IP range) and individual memberships (access with User ID). The cost for academic institutions also depends on the FTE size of each school. Please contact office@chinadatacenter.net for a detailed quote. 

    Q: Can we have the slides by email?

    A: We’ll share our recorded webinar and slides on the China Data Institute Channel of Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIcM99viwKL1lHj-IZpqPtw. Each registered person will receive an email notice about the link.

    Q: Where can I find the 2010 census data?

    A: You can find 2010 census data (at province, city, county and township levels) in China Geo-Explorer.

    Q: Are there any special considerations for autonomous provinces or counties in China, particularly in terms of rural spatial data?

    A: The data are available for those regions in the same way as  the data for other regions in China Geo-Explorer.

    Q: Are some statistics compared with data published by Chinese authorities?

    A: The statistics and census data of China Geo-Explorer are directly from the National Bureau of Statistics of China.  These  authentic and authoritative data have been aggregated at different administrative levels and integrated with GIS maps. Most of these data are not available elsewhere, even in paper publications.

    Q: How to get the data? Is it free?

    A: We do offer a free version of China Geo-Explorer, which provides spatial data at province, prefecture city and county levels with a limited number of variables. The access to the full version requires a paid subscription for sustainable development. Our members range from large research universities to small colleges, mostly sponsored by their libraries.

    Q: I wonder how users can obtain the data from the platform of China Geo-Explorer?

    A: User can query and export the data to different formats, including HTML, Excel, Word, PDF, or GIS shapefiles from China Geo-Explorer.

    Q: What about pricing for commercial use?

    A: It depends how those data will be used for commercial applications, such as internal uses, derived products, or redistributions. We welcome all business partners for commercial applications.

    A: When is another webinar?

    Q: We usually offer bi-monthly webinars. We may offer a special webinar next month if the current project on the China Data Lab, a new cloud based platform for the integrated data analysis, is going well. It is expected that we can release the China Data Lab in several weeks.

    Contact: office@chinadatacenter.net
  Email: office@chinadatacenter.net