Geographic Information Systems Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for cartographers, geographers and GIS professionals. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Is their a way (other than manual) to convert a large data set with county names to their respective FIPS code?

share|improve this question
what software do you have at your disposal? – Brad Nesom Mar 18 '13 at 16:47
Export your table as a MDB and import to Excel. – lewis Mar 18 '13 at 18:45
I have access to the ArcGIS suite and Microsoft Excel – H.B. Mar 18 '13 at 20:19
Because county names are unique within state, why not instead join a table of FIPS codes (for the appropriate Census year) to your original dataset on the state/county name fields? – whuber Mar 19 '13 at 5:28
Easy! You have a sorted named range with county;state names in column one, FIPS codes in column two, and do a VLOOKUP(RC[-1]&";"&RC[-2], fips_range, 2, TRUE) all through the Excel column. (Assuming county is the first one to the left, and state is the second to the left). – Deer Hunter Mar 20 '13 at 7:22

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.