Skip to main content
Expand AU Menu

Find Your Data

Your Data Search Begins Here

The web is awash in international relations data, but who knows where to start the search? Let us get you headed in the right direction by pointing you to some of the most comprehensive data repositories on the web. Browse:

As you discover new data and data archives that you would like to see added to our lists, contact us.

Data Resources at American University

The AU Library has an incredible subject guide for statistical resources, many of which are only available through AU.

Online Data Archives

One of the best ways to discover data for a project, particularly if you're looking for something very specific, is to search through some of the massive data archives that exist on the web. These are just a few of the most common:

Data Sources by Topic [under construction]

Organized thematically, this is just a small sample of the freely available data of interest to students of international affairs:

 

Good General Data Sources

 

Foreign Aid

 

Public Opinion Data

  • Pew Global Attitudes Project
  • Data from Pew's annual, 39-nation survey. Surveys go back to 2001.
  • Pew Research Center for the People & the PressPew Research Center for the People & the Press
  • Search through 17 years of Pew's monthly surveys in the U.S.
  • Afrobarometer
  • Download data from regular, national surveys on democracy and governance in 35 African countries.
  • Latinobarómetro
  • Since 1995, Latinobarómetro has conducted over 20,000 interviews across 18 Latin American countries.
  • Arab Barometer
  • Explore data from two waves of representative public opinion surveys (2006-08; 2010-11) across 10 Arab countries. Phase II includes surveys in the wake of the "Arab Spring."
  • Asian Baromter
  • Public opinion studies from 13 East Asian states and 5 South Asian countries.
  • Polling the Nations
  • 21 years of polls across more than 100 countries!
  • World Values Survey
  • Focusing on human beliefs and values, the WVS conducts representative surveys in over 90 countries.
  • Roper Opinion Data
  • Data from national and international public opinion polls since 1935.

 

NGOs and CSOs

 

Democracy & Freedom

  • Economist Intelligence Unit Democracy Index
  • The EIU's Laza Kekic ranks the nations of the world by democratic political characteristics in this 2007 report.
  • Freedom in the World
  • The ranking of record for political freedoms, published since 1972 by the Washington, DC-based nonprofit Freedom House.
  • Index of Economic Freedom
  • Annual ranking of 186 countries by the strength of ten economic freedoms, published since 1994 by the Wall Street Journal and the conservative Heritage Foundation.
  • Polity IV Project
  • Data on the incidence of democratic and autocratic types of political authority spanning 1800-2013, from the Vienna, VA-based Center for Systemic Peace.
  • Ibrahim Index of African Governance
  • Dataset from the London-based Mo Ibrahim Foundation, tracking variables related to security, the rule of law, political pluralism, and economic opportunity from 2000-present.
  • Corruption Perceptions Index
  • A dataset tracking government corruption in 175 countries from 2000-present, from the Berlin-based NGO Transparency International.
  • Worldwide Governance Indicators
  • World Bank data on political pluralism and accountability, quality of governance, the rule of law, and related variables for 215 countries spanning 1996-2013.
  • CIRI Human Rights Dataset
  • Data measuring respect for human rights in 202 countries spanning 1981-2011, compiled by current and former faculty members at SUNY-Binghamton.
  • PARLINE
  • Data from the International Parliamentary Union on the taxonomies of 265 parliamentary bodies across the 189 countries that possess a national legislature.
  • IDEA Databases and Networks
  • Links to a variety of databases on electoral systems and voter behavior, sponsored by the Sweden-based International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance.
  • Database of Political Institutions 2012 (Updated Jan. 2013)
  • Descriptive statistics on national political institutions spanning 1975-2012, published by the World Bank.
  • Index of African Governance
  • Data on security, the rule of law, human rights and freedoms, and economic opportunity in African nations, from a 2009 study by Robert I. Rotberg and Rachel M. Gisselquist.
  • Country Indicators for Foreign Policy
  • This site from Carleton University has links to a wide variety of data sources, as well as some compiled data from the University itself. Linked sources include
  • Election Passport
  • Detailed election results from over 90 countries, compiled by David Lublin of American University. (Still updated, but eventually to be superseded by the Constituency-Level Elections Archive.)

 

Environmental Data

  • Environmental Vulnerability Index
  • A collection of 50 indicators of vulnerability to future environmental shocks, jointly sponsored by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community and the United Nations Environment Programme.
  • Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center
  • A portal to 190 datasets on topics including conservation, land use, water, population, and other environmental topics, jointly sponsored by NASA and Columbia University.
  • Global Footprint Network
  • Measures of human impact on ecology from an Oakland, CA-based political advocacy group.
  • World Resources Institute
  • Maps and data from a Washington, DC-based political advocacy group.
  • China Energy Databook
  • Data on energy use in the People's Republic of China spanning 1949-2011, published by the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

 

War & Conflict

  • Mind the Gap
  • A September 2013 paper from the German Institute of Global and Area Studies, providing "an annotated overview of datasets in the study of institutions and conflict in divided societies."
  • Minorities at Risk Project
  • Data on 284 politically active ethnic groups spanning 1945-present, from the Center for International Development and Conflict Management at the University of Maryland.
  • Correlates of War
  • Datasets tracking variables correlated with inter-, intra-, and non-state wars spanning 1816-present, sponsored by Pennsylvania State University.
  • UCDP Conflict Encyclopedia
  • An interactive map of armed conflict from Sweden's Uppsala University, spanning 1975-present; click on "Datasets" to view associated files.
  • Conflict Barometer
  • Annual report on wars, coups d'etat, peace negotiations, and non-violent crises from the Heidelberg Institute for International Conflict Research, spanning 1992-present.
  • Global Terrorism Database
  • Open-source data on acts of terrorism spanning 1970-present, from the Department of Homeland Security's START program at the University of Maryland.
  • Integrated Network for Societal Conflict Research
  • Data on war, terrorism, coups d'etat, state fragility, major crime, and more, from the Vienna, VA-based Center for Systemic Peace.
  • PRIO Replication Data
  • Replication files from studies carried out by staff members at the Peace Research Institute Oslo, a Norwegian think tank.
  • CCAPS Armed Conflict in Africa Database
  • University of Texas database tracking violence in Africa, spanning 1997-present and including weekly updates on 30 "high-risk" countries.
  • Country Indicators for Foreign Policy
  • This site from Carleton University has links to a wide variety of data sources, as well as some compiled data from the University itself.

 

Peacekeeping, Disasters, & Humanitarian Data

 

Migration, Trafficking, & Refugee Data

 

Security Data

  • Facts on International Relations and Security Trends
  • A wide-ranging collection of international-affairs databases, covering topics ranging from military expenditures to human freedom to disease outbreaks, and backed by an international consortium of governments and NGOs.
  • The World Drug Report
  • The UN's annual report on the global production, trafficking, and consumption of illegal or restricted drugs, including opiates, cocaine, cannabis, and amphetamines.
  • EDA Defence Data Portal
  • Defense spending, force size, and force composition measurements on 27 European Union member states, published by the European Defence Agency.
  • Center for Systemic Peace
  • This Vienna, VA-based nonprofit applies systems analytics to war and conflict, yielding data on over 160 countries across several publications, most notably the Center's annual report on "Conflict, Governance, and State Fragility."

 

Economic Data

  • Microfinance Information Exchange
  • The DC-based nonprofit MIX promotes financial services for the poor through two websites.
    • MIX Market
    • A clearinghouse for self-reported information on microfinance institutions (MFI's) and supporting organizations.
    • FINclusion Lab (currently in beta)
    • A toolbox for analysis and comparison of financial services in poor communities.
  • Interactive Tariff and Trade DataWeb
  • A free portal to official data on US tariffs and international trade, spanning 1989-present.
  • Trade Stats Express
  • Annual and quarterly trade data from the International Trade Administration, US Department of Commerce.
  • World Economic Forum
  • The Geneva-based nonprofit, best known for its annual meeting in Davos, partners government and private-sector leaders to promote economic growth "in the spirit of global citizenship."
  • Economic Freedom Network
  • Annual reports from Canada's Fraser Institute on the "Economic Freedom of the World," tracking 42 indicators in 141 nations.
  • UN Conference on Trade and Development World Investment Report
  • Annual reports spanning 1989-present, covering trends in foreign direct investment. Also publishes topical analyses and fact sheets on individual countries.
  • UN Development Program Income Gini Coefficient
  • Handy table displaying each country's Gini coefficient, a measure of income inequality.
  • Penn World Table
  • A large panel dataset of national economic indicators spanning 1950-2011 and covering 167 countries.
  • Global Entrepreneurship Monitor
  • An annual assessment of entrepreneurial activity over almost 100 nations, focused on describing the behavior of individual business owners.
  • ILOSTAT
  • A repository of labor statistics from the UN's International Labour Organization, including country profiles and an Excel plugin for easier manipulation. Supersedes the LABORSTA database.
  • Statistical Review of World Energy
  • The longest-running annual statistical record of world energy production and consumption, published by BP (olim British Petroleum, olim the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company) since 1952.

 

Food and Agriculture

 

Development

 

Global Health

 

Population Data

  • Population Reference Bureau
  • Population Reference Bureau Data finder(population, education, economy, environment, health, HIV/AIDS, reproductive health
  • Labor statistics
  • International information on labor
  • Demographic and Health Surveys
  • The DHS Program has earned a worldwide reputation for collecting and disseminating accurate, nationally representative data on fertility, family planning, maternal and child health, gender, HIV/AIDS, malaria, and nutrition.

 

Communications/Media

 

Gender and Women

 

Culture

 

Globalization

 

US Only

  • Census Scope (from 2000 census, including on segregation)
  • Census and Trend Data going back to 2000, 1990, 1980, and sometimes even further, on a growing list of topics, including population growth, population by race, age structure, family structure, and income.
  • FedStats
  • FedStats supports a community of practice for over 100 agencies engaged in the production and dissemination of official federal statistics, and provides the public with a showcase of information, tools and news related to official Federal statistics.
  • US Census
  • Statistical Abstract of the United States
  • Charity Navigator
  • Charity Navigator has become the nation's largest and most-utilized evaluator of charities.
  • US Election Atlas
  • Atlas of US Presidential Elections
  • Measure of America
  • US Human Development Index by state, district, and more.
  • Integrated Health Interview Series
  • Harmonized data and documentation for the U.S. National Health Interview Survey
  • Institute of Education Sciences
  • IPEDSthe primary source for data on colleges, universities, and technical and vocational postsecondary institutions in the U.S.
  • City-Data
  • Data for over 74,000 U.S. cities

 

Area Specific (Non-US)

 

Miscellaneous

 

Cities and Empires