The ambition of the CCRI team is to construct an infrastructure that will facilitate research on the transformation of Canadian society from the late-19th to the mid-20th centuries. The CCRI will be composed of two kinds of databases: those that contain ‘primary sources,’ namely the contents of historical evidence, and those that contain ‘secondary sources,’ the material created by CCRI researchers to enhance appropriate analysis of the historical evidence. Each of the various databases is represented graphically in the above diagram by a green balloon. Integral to all these databases will be a geographical framework constructed using a Geographic Information System. GIS map layers for the entire country are being created for the 1911-1951 period to enable the location, selection, aggregation and analysis of census data.
The most important component of the CCRI will be the census microdatabases of the 1911-1951 enumerations. In addition, we are building textual databases created from documents related to the administrative history of each census enumeration as well as from newspaper coverage and political debate in the House of Commons and the Senate. The goal of these textual databases is to provide researchers with the contextual evidence necessary to undertake appropriate analysis of the census microdata.
The secondary sources of the CCRI will facilitate research on the primary sources (especially the census microdata). Represented by the small green balloons on the upper part of the image, these databases will range from introductions to the various census enumerations and census questions to technical discussions of data entry and coding issues as well as bibliographies of relevant research publications. The objective of providing this material is to support research on the CCRI primary sources by helping users understand and benefit from the intensive work undertaken to construct the census microdatabases as well as previous and related research efforts.
Four major databases will contain the content of the primary sources, each of which is depicted graphically as one of the balloons on the lower part of the image.