Data Sources from Governments around the World - dummies

Data Sources from Governments around the World

By Meta S. Brown

The United States is only one of many governments that share data with the public. While you won’t find exactly the same range or types of data from every country, you will find that most nations have some data to share. There are also some intergovernmental and nonprofit organizations that offer international data resources.

  • OFFSTATS. University of Auckland’s OFFSTATS database is a portal to statistical agency sources around the world, like an international version of the United States’ FedStats portal. It has links organized by country, region, and subject. (International agencies do business in the local languages, and many don’t have English-language versions.)

  • Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) aims to promote policies to improve the well-being of the world’s people. The OECD measures productivity, global trade, and investment. It analyzes data on trade and everyday life.

    The OECD also offers resources targeted for use by statisticians. These are also valuable for data miners. And the OECD has a portal to data sources around the world.

  • U.S. open government portal. You can find lists of open data portals for international sources (as well as U.S. states, counties, and cities) on Data.gov.

  • United Nations. The United Nations (UN) is the world’s most influential intergovernmental organization. The UN offers a portal to its statistical sources.

  • European Union. The European Union, which includes most of the Western European nations, has a portal to its statistical sources.

    The Open Data Institute promotes sharing and use of open data around the world. It’s a key source for news on open data, as well as a center for research and education.