Downloading IPUMS-DHS Contextual Variables

The global cluster data on contextual variables describe features of the physical and social environment surrounding the location where a DHS respondent was interviewed. Data are included for ALL GPS clusters released by The DHS Program as of July 2018; this includes samples that are not yet available in IPUMS-DHS.

A list of all the samples can be found here

For more information about IPUMS-DHS contextual variables, please refer to the overview section on contextual variables.

IPUMS-DHS data extracts can be merged with IPUMS-DHS contextual variables .csv files using the DHSID variable. Users who want to use IPUMS-DHS contextual variables with data obtained from the DHS Program, must construct their own DHSID variable for linking. The DHSID variable can be constructed by concatenating the 2-character DHS country code (e.g., BD for Bangladesh), the 4-digit YEAR (e.g., 2014), and the 8-digit CLUSTER number (e.g., 00000008) into a 14-character string (e.g., BD201400000008).

Each contextual variable link below downloads a .csv file with the 14-character DHS cluster number and the computed value (e.g., predominant soil type or precipitation) around ALL GPS clusters. A comprehensive table on each contextual variable can be found in the summary section.

Physical and environment context

Economic and social context

Agricultural context


Additional contextual variables that link GPS cluster data to ancillary data are available from The DHS Program's Geospatial Covariates page.
  1. PRECIPITATION data range from January 1981 to August 2018. This full set of variables is not available through the extract system. Researchers can merge the precipitation data to their IPUMS-DHS data extract following the instructions at the top of the page.
  2. TEMPERATURE data range from January 1980 to December 2016. This full set of variables is not available through the extract system. Researchers can merge the precipitation data to their IPUMS-DHS data extract following the instructions at the top of the page.

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