Working with SOEPhelp


The following tool is available from Version v34 (Wave bh) and from Stata Version 12.

The SOEP data sets are equipped with numerous helpful additional information. SOEPhelp is a stata.ado for displaying dataset-based documentation. By installing this stata command, data set information, such as variable histories, are displayed directly in your stata window.


Open Stata and enter the following in the command line :

net install soephelp, replace from(

The following commands are provided by .ado:

For a general introduction to SOEPhelp, you can type the command help soephelp. Here you will find a detailed explanation of the Stata.ado and the different ways to use it. The .ado is available in German and English.


With the command soephelp you receive a basic description of the data set as well as the samples contained in it including a list of the instrument corresponding to the sample. In addition, all relevant key variables used to identify households or persons are shown.


If you enter the command soephelp <variable>, you will get detailed information about the addressed variable. The question asked in the questionnaire is displayed and in which samples or instruments the question was asked. Additionally, the command offers the corresponding long variable as well as the link of the displayed variable to our documentation portal


SOEPhelp ist direkt mit dem SOEPcompanion verknüpft.