Archive for April, 2009

The World Income Inequality Database

By Kieron L Jones, on 28 April 2009

UNU Wider The World Income Inequality Database is a joint project of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations University / World Institute for Development Economics Research (UNU / WIDER). The project aims at “critically evaluating different methods of measuring income inequality, understanding the dynamics of the relationship between economic growth, poverty alleviation, and income inequality”.

The database is an extension of the Deininger-Squire World Bank database and is regularly updated. It provides income inequality data at both time series and country level. The data covers changes in income inequality over the period from 1950, with an emphasis on 1980 onwards with coverage of over 150 countries. The database provides information on: gross, net and taxable incomes; earnings and expenditure; main income recipient units; rural and urban data. You can browse the Gini Ratios inequality indexes for a number of different income series for various countries. Additionally, there is a useful bibliography of articles related to the research area.

EURODATA Research Archive

By Kieron L Jones, on 27 April 2009

MZES Mannheim Centre for European Social Research (MZES): “The basic function of EURODATA is to support comparative European research at the MZES. The archive covers the whole of Europe and focuses on official statistics. Its core consists of tabular data (transnational, national and sub-national level) in the socio-economic and political domain. Via research projects (service projects and participation in projects of the research departments), it develops comparative databases and meta-information systems on official statistics in Europe. The archive continuously monitors major developments of the European data infrastructure both in the field of official statistics (tabular data and microdata) and science-based survey programmes.”

Committee on Standards in Public Life Inquiry into MPs’ Expenses

By Kieron L Jones, on 24 April 2009

The Committee on Standards in Public Life is an independent advisory body to the UK government. It works to monitor, report and make recommendations on standards, codes of conduct and accountability amongst UK MPs and members of public bodies. This section of its website provides information on its investigation into the rules governing MPs allowances and expenditure which was set up in 2008/9. In particular it is focusing on allegations of corruption and misuse of allowances for second homes. The website provides information on the scope of the Inquiry, including statements, press releases and any associated papers.

Cartoon Library & Museum Ohio State University

By Kieron L Jones, on 24 April 2009

The Cartoon Library & Museum Ohio State University is a leading American collection of editorial cartoons, political cartoons, comic books and graphic novels. Its website provides information on its holdings and collection development policy. It also provides free access to its searchable catalogue and a cartoon image database. The latter contains scanned images of a growing number of items from the collections. These include political caricatures and political cartoons taken from newspapers during American elections as well as examples illustrating American social history, celebrities and events. These would be of value for researchers of American social and poltical history.

Budget day – follow the latest news & views online

By Kieron L Jones, on 22 April 2009

Official Government websites

News Services

Commentary from Academic and Finance Specialists

International Crisis Behavior Project

By Kieron L Jones, on 17 April 2009

International Crisis Behavior Project The International Crisis Behavior Project (University of Maryland & McGill University) offers access to the primary data collections from the International Crisis Behavior Project (ICB). The newest release of these data (version 9.0, January 2009) contains information on 452 international crises, 35 protracted conflicts, and 994 crisis actors from the end of World War I through 2006. Additionally, other data collections derived from the primary ICB data sets are also available at this archive. The site provides background information about the project as well as an extensive sampling of recent research that has utilised the ICB data.

Business Environment & Enterprise Performance Survey (BEEPS)

By Kieron L Jones, on 17 April 2009

BEEPS, issued by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, gives data on approximately 20,000 firms in 27 transition countries in three rounds: 1999, 2002 and 2005. To set a benchmark for the transition countries, a survey of comparator countries was conducted in 2004-2005 in two rounds.

International Futures

By Kieron L Jones, on 17 April 2009

International Futures Initiated by Dr. Barry B. Hughes of the University of Denver and now kept up to date by the Pardee Center at the same institution, International Futures is freely available global modelling software aimed at students. It recreates ‘demographic, economic, energy, agricultural, socio-political, and environmental subsystems for 183 countries interacting in the global system’ and the aim of the software is to ‘facilitate exploration of global futures through alternative scenarios’. Date coverage of the data is from 1960 onwards. The website also gives access to the full text (in PDF format) of forecasting volumes from the Patterns of Potential Human Progress project as well as a number of reports about International Futures. There is guidance for new users and an online help system. A community forum is also available to discuss topics in greater depth. The software is available for download and can be used on PCs with MS Windows. Alternatively, you can use an online version.

Community Payback

By Kieron L Jones, on 16 April 2009

Community Payback is part of the main UK government website Direct.Gov. It enables UK citizens to vote for the schemes which they would like offenders sentenced to community work to undertake in their local area / community. The site includes general information on the work of the Parole Board and the nature and purpose of community sentences, as well as the opportunity to vote online and view public feedback.


By Kieron L Jones, on 15 April 2009

R4D R4D is an open access portal maintained by the UK Department for International Development (DFID). It provides free access to up to date information about research programmes funded by DFID. This includes press releases, policy papers, statements, case studies, reports and statistics. Key topics covered are sustainable development programmes, economic growth, agricultural development, climate change and development issues, healthcare programmes and government and democratization programmes. Users may sign up to receive RSS newsfeeds or alerts when new materials are added to the website.