I am a sucker for data. I have collected some useful, some beautiful sources for demographic and political data I’d like to share. Let the statistics surprise you.
First of all there is IBM’s Many Eyes Project ( found via edgargonzales). It is a bet on the power of human visual intelligence to find patterns. Our goal is to “democratize” visualization and to enable a new social kind of data analysis. (from their website) The community driven site lets users upload data and display it with different graphical engines – with informative and visually stunning results.
the Human Development Report, which also offer their entire dataset as a downloadable pdf. The Human Development Index has the goal of putting people back at the center of the development process in terms of economic debate, policy and advocacy. The goal was both massive and simple, with far-ranging implications – going beyond income to assess the level of people’s long-term well-being. (from their website).
Worldmapper is a collection of maps, stretched according to the statistical data of interest.
Worldprocessor is a similar project by Ingo Günther, marrying data with art by painting maps on countless of plastic globes.
With 82 years Japan has the highest life expectancy. All 35 countries at the bottom of this list are located in sub-Saharan Africa; their citizen’s average life expectancy is between 52 and 39 years.
The data for the above globe originates from the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development) Statistics Portal where you can find data, well, about anything – including full reports and excel data dumps.
The same holds true for Eurostat, the European Union’s Statistics portal. The data is restricted to the EU – but more in depth, down to the regional level. The quite technical interface offers you to create your own comparison charts – and nowhere else would you find the total length of motorways per country.
A comprehensive collection of world country information is The World Fact Book by the CIA. Also available as a download for offline use (factbook.zip 44.5MB).
You’ll find all of the above links in our link archive. Check it out.