Version 2 of U.S. Synthetic Population Database Available

Hello OpenABMers:

Last January, RTI announced the availability of Version 1 of the U.S. Synthetic Population based on 2005-2009 ACS 5-year population estimates [See prior openabm post on 1/19/2012].

We have now completed Version 2 of the database. This version now includes:

  • Locations of Group Quarters (nursing homes, military bases, prisons, and universities) along with synthetic group quarters residents for those facilities. These synthetic people have age and sex characteristics based on various distributions we’ve found from other data sources.
  • Locations of schools and assignments of students to those schools. The assignment process is based on the capacity of each school, grade levels available in the school, and distance to synthetic persons who, according to PUMS, attend school. Essentially, we’ve encoded the school social network into the data.
  • Locations of workplaces and assignments of workers to those workplaces. The assignment process is based on location and size of businesses and commuting patterns. We do not attempt to match people to workplaces based on occupation or industry, but at least each working person is assigned a workplace so that simulations can estimate contacts in the workplace. As with schools, we’ve encoded this workplace social network into the data.

This new Version 2 is available from the MIDAS portal at

The quick start guide has also been updated and provides basic information about the production methodologies and the file formats (

The database was created by RTI International ( under a grant from the National Institutes of General Medical Sciences called the ‘Models of Infectious Disease Agent Study’ (or MIDAS, (

Contact for further info: If you have questions about the data, how to access, it our how to use it, please contact Bill Wheaton ([email protected]) for more information.