R: Swiss Fertility and Socioeconomic Indicators (1888) Data: Swiss Fertility and Socioeconomic Indicators (1888) Data


Standardized fertility measure and socio-economic indicators for each of 47 French-speaking provinces of Switzerland at about 1888.




A data frame with 47 observations on 6 variables, each of which is in percent, i.e., in [0, 100].

[,1] Fertility Ig, ‘common standardized fertility measure’
[,2] Agriculture % of males involved in agriculture as occupation
[,3] Examination % draftees receiving highest mark on army examination
[,4] Education % education beyond primary school for draftees.
[,5] Catholic % ‘catholic’ (as opposed to ‘protestant’).
[,6] Infant.Mortality live births who live less than 1 year.

All variables but ‘Fertility’ give proportions of the population.


(paraphrasing Mosteller and Tukey):

Switzerland, in 1888, was entering a period known as the demographic transition; i.e., its fertility was beginning to fall from the high level typical of underdeveloped countries.

The data collected are for 47 French-speaking “provinces” at about 1888.

Here, all variables are scaled to [0, 100], where in the original, all but "Catholic" were scaled to [0, 1].


Files for all 182 districts in 1888 and other years have been available at https://opr.princeton.edu/archive/pefp/switz.aspx.

They state that variables Examination and Education are averages for 1887, 1888 and 1889.


Project “16P5”, pages 549–551 in

Mosteller, F. and Tukey, J. W. (1977) Data Analysis and Regression: A Second Course in Statistics. Addison-Wesley, Reading Mass.

indicating their source as “Data used by permission of Franice van de Walle. Office of Population Research, Princeton University, 1976. Unpublished data assembled under NICHD contract number No 1-HD-O-2077.”


Becker, R. A., Chambers, J. M. and Wilks, A. R. (1988) The New S Language. Wadsworth & Brooks/Cole.


require(stats); require(graphics)
pairs(swiss, panel = panel.smooth, main = "swiss data",
      col = 3 + (swiss$Catholic > 50))
summary(lm(Fertility ~ . , data = swiss))

Questions? Problems? Suggestions? or email at ian@mutexlabs.com.

All documentation is copyright its authors; we didn't write any of that.