Starting in issue 1 of volume 236 (2016), the Jahrbücher für Nationalökonomie und Statistik / Journal of Economics and Statistics publish a special section entitled Data Observer.  Contributions to this series describe data that can be used in empirical research in economics, and in the social sciences in general. While most of these data sets are micro data at the level of individuals, households, or firms (including linked employer-employee data sets), cross section and time series data at an aggregate level are covered as well. The purpose of the contributions to this section is to describe the information that is available in the data sets, to give examples of topics investigated with the data, and to inform readers how to access these data for their own research. The contributions are written by experts who often were in charge of collecting or building the data sets. Furthermore, papers in the series portray the research data centers and data service centers of data producing institutions that allow academic researchers to work with (mostly confidential) micro data for individuals and firms.
 This section continues the European Data Watch series that was published in Schmollers Jahrbuch / Journal of Applied Social Science Studies from 2000 to 2015. For a survey of the 111 contributions to this series see Wagner (2015).