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Sunday, May 16, 2010

Global public data in reasonably user-friendly form

The World Bank has made part of its World Development Indicators data set available to anyone with a computer and a reasonably fast internet connection, at no additional cost. Clearly, an improvement on the situation before.

Google, for its part, has created a new visualisation application that makes great graphics from data obtained from the WDI and other publicly available datasets.

Although probably not exactly meeting all professional standards for quantitative research, these are definitely superb teaching tools.

5 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing this great source. How can you export graphs from google data explorer? I thought that there'd be a photo option. Copy/paste do not work at least not when I try to carry the graph over to Word. Thanks.

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  2. Well, I am dismayed to admit that I don't represent Google (I suspect I would be located at a much higher point in the income graphs if I were ;-)) so I can't answer this question. Perhaps somebody at Google will: Have you tried asking it at this location?

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  3. Ok. Thanks. I know that you're not representing Google. However, you did export graphs (above and on FB) from Eurostat sources (e.g. most recently the France/Romania/Bulgaria FX and PPP) which are published by "Google data explorer" so that's the reason why I dared to ask. :)

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  4. Oh, I understand now. The confusion is that the data I presented recently come from the original source some of which Google also uses: the World Bank's online data archive. It is available online, free, but a tiny bit less user friendly than the Google application. (Google is essentially a meta-site, using stuff from elsewhere. Their value added is the user-friendliness and the neat graphics.) Anyway, here is the link to the source I used: http://databank.worldbank.org .

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  5. Oops, I see I forgot to include the html tag for the link in my previous comment. So, here it is: http://databank.worldbank.org.

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cover page of the book

cover page of the book
image used for the cover design by Anannya Dasgupta