Intro to the U.S. Census API in Python and R

Public group

Gladfelter Hall

Polett Walk · Philadelphia, PA

How to find us

1st Floor - GIS Studio, Gladfelter Hall, 1115 Polett Walk, Philadelphia, PA 19122

Location image of event venue


Please note you will need photo ID to get into the building!

Do you work with Census data in your applications, or want to learn how? Do you find it confusing to locate the data you want, and tedious to download it, maybe just to get one or two variables? In this hands-on workshop you will learn how to use the Census API to automate data ingestion from the Decennial Census and the annual American Community Survey. You will learn about the kinds of data gathered by the bureau, how to find it, and how to construct API calls in both Python and R, two popular programming languages for data science. The code won't be very complex, but some familiarity with Python or R will be helpful.


* Install any Python installation and any Python IDE you are comfortable working in. Install the following packages: requests, pandas, geopandas, seaborn.

* Install R and the RStudio IDE. Install the following packages in R with dependencies = TRUE: tidyverse, tidycensus, tmap.

* Request *and activate* a Census API key at . Please do this well in advance--usually the response is immediate, but last Fall there was a several day delay in issuing new API keys.

About the Instructor:

Lee Hachadoorian is an Assistant Professor of Instruction in Geography and Urban Studies at Temple University. Lee worked in tech and finance before becoming interested in urban inequality. He pursued studies in GIS and urban economic geography, completing his PhD at CUNY Graduate Center. His research interests include redistricting, residential location, segregation, and local public finance. He currently serves as Assistant Director of the PSM in GIS at Temple University, where he teaches courses in spatial databases and geospatial programming.