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  UC government data web site wins prestigious award

Counting California offers information ranging from social and business indicators to local government activities online

Counting California, a free Web site for accessing a broad array of government economic data and social science information about the Golden State, received the distinguished "Documents to the People" award at the annual American Library Association convention today (Monday).

The award, one of the highest bestowed by the association's Government Documents Round Table, is presented annually to an individual or organization that most effectively encourages the use of government documents in library service. The award includes a stipend to support a government documents project.

Susan Tulis, chair of the round table awards committee, called Counting California "a significant, innovative, and usable database."

Through the Counting California site (http://countingcalifornia.cdlib.org), users can browse for information by topic (such as business, crime, education, and demographics), by geographic region (city and county), or by agency (such as the California Department of Heath Services and the U.S. Bureau of the Census).

Launched in 2001 and funded with support from the California State Library, Counting California is a project of the California Digital Library at the University of California.

"One of the great things about Counting California is that you don't need to be a researcher to find and use this information," said Rosalie Lack, the Counting California project manager at the California Digital Library. "Instead of searching for statistics through each individual agency, you can go to one place at the Counting California Web site to search for all types of government data. It makes this information much more accessible to the general public."

Access to a growing volume of information

Counting California is continuing to add new content and enhance access to new government data and statistics.

Recent additions to the Counting California Web site include the state's recent statistical profile, and new historic data from the County and City Data Book (1944-1977), which is unavailable anywhere else on the Web in such a usable format. They join a growing body of diverse information ranging from social and business indicators to local government activities to population counts and estimates.

In addition, a new search feature allows more advanced searching by topic, data source and agency name. An improved search results page provides users with more information about the resulting tables and displays the assigned topic headings, allowing users to easily refine their searches.

About Counting California

The Counting California project is managed by the California Digital Library at the University of California. The free online service (http://countingcalifornia.cdlib.org) provides a single access point for the growing range of social science and economic information from California state agencies and the federal government.

About the California Digital Library

Through the use of technology and innovation, the California Digital Library (http://www.cdlib.org/) supports the assembly and creative use of scholarship for the University of California libraries and the communities they serve. Established in 1997 as a UC library, the CDL has become one the largest digital libraries in the world.

About the American Library Association

The American Library Association (http://www.ala.org/) is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with more than 64,000 members. Its mission is to promote the highest quality library and information services and public access to information.


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