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In her 1990 discussion paper Bibliographic References for Computer Files in the Social Sciences, Sue Dodd of the University of North Carolina noted that there were no definitive guidelines for citing because bibliographic standards typically lag behind technology. Today, the situation is almost the same: there is a lack of common standards and of consensus on an accepted universal method for citing statistics and data products.
In developing our collection of examples from Statistics Canada information sources, we have consulted various guides and style manuals, and we have made many adaptations.
The elements used in our examples are based on two bilingual (English and French) standards of the International Organization for Standardization: ISO 690:1987 and ISO 690-2:1997. Adjustments have been made for tables using the U.S. Census publication Suggested Citation Styles for our Internet Information and for microdata files using Citing Electronic Data Files, published by the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research. Examples for maps have been developed from Cartographic Citations: A Style Guide. With respect to capitalization, punctuation, formatting and other stylistic matters, we have followed the style guide developed specifically for Statistics Canada authors.
For this manual, our goal is to supplement, not replace, standard style manuals. It is designed so that it can be adapted for use with non-Statistics Canada documents as well.