DOCUMENT TITLE Consortium for International Earth Science Information Network

China in Time and Space


CITAS Summary

China in Time and Space (CITAS) was founded to inventory, acquire, develop, and disseminate electronic databases on China. Of particular interest are those datasets that are spatially and temporally referenced and can be used for global change and social science research. CITAS is envisaged as a permanent organization charged with providing access to contemporary and historical data on China at minimal cost to the global environmental change research community, social scientists, policy-makers, China scholars, and the general public. Current CITAS projects include:

CITAS is a response to a widely perceived need for the creation of a central repository for spatially and temporally referenced data on China and provides a focus for ongoing efforts to expand both the information base and access to it, and a nucleus for expert guidance on its organization and use. No other country provides the possibility of such an abundance of information, with such historical depth and consistency, for such a large portion of the earth's population.

Additional information on CITAS is available through the CITAS Gopher/CITAS Home-Page. Further information and bulletins on progress can be obtained by subscription to the CITAS listserver at

CITAS Locations

University of Washington
China in Time and Space (CITAS)
Department of Sociology, DK-40
Seattle, WA 98195

Tel: 1-206-685-2967
Fax: 1-206-543-2516


CITAS Datasets/Resources

CITAS, in collaboration with the Consortium for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN), will be archiving a variety of datasets on China and making them available to users (both China and non-China specialists). Currently, CITAS is developing a geographic information system (GIS) containing several cartographic layers and many spatio-temporally referenced attributes. This historical GIS will cover changes over the past 1,250 years in China.

Other projects include the documentation and incorporation of 1980s data on cities/towns and county-level units coded to facilitate the analysis of regional systems, as well as the coding, evaluation, and incorporation of county-level data extracted from provincial statistical yearbooks compiled between 1950 and 1992.

Datasets from other organizations containing environmental, earth science, and global change information can be located through CIESIN's Gateway.

Related Organizations

CITAS is a partnership between China specialists, initially sponsored by the Joint Committee on Chinese Studies (JCCS) under the American Council of Learned Societies/Social Science Research Council, and the Consortium for International Earth Science Information Network. CITAS is supported in part by CIESIN through the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

For additional internet resources on China see the China Home Page provided by the Institute of High Energy Physics, Beijing; the gopher server of China News Digest CND; and the Chinese Community Information Center of International Federation of Chinese Students and Scholars (IFCSS).

Information about other Information Cooperative partner organizations may be located through CIESIN's Organizational Guides.

CITAS Contacts

CITAS Policy and Planning


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Last modified 21 February 1995.