aggregate data analysis
aggregate data analysisany form of analysis which employs available bodies of published or other data (e.g. demographic data, suicide statistics as used by DURKHEIM) describing the characteristics of an entire population or similar aggregate of individuals. The attraction of this mode of research is that large quantities of data, including cross-cultural data, are available at little cost. The main disadvantage is that the researcher may have little awareness of how the original data were collected. See also ECOLOGICAL FALLACY OR WRONG LEVEL FALLACY, OFFICIAL STATISTICS, SECONDARY ANALYSIS, CICOUREL.
Collins Dictionary of Sociology, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2000