Public Policy information resources: Facts & data


Government information


Country facts

Statistics and Microdata

Start with: What is the difference between Data and Statistics? (Michigan State University)

For detailed assistance with research involving microdata, contact the SFU Research Data Library team at 


When doing statistical research consider the choice of dimensions/ variables/characteristics, such as:

Time ; Geography ; Population/Variable ;  Output

Other considerations are accessibility (e.g. Format, Availability) and the source itself (e.g. reliability, associated files, codebooks and methodologies).  
Finally, the big question to ask is: Which organizations might be collecting this information?



Statistics Canada
The nation's statistical agency

The Daily
to find a StatsCan report mentioned in a newspaper article, look at The Daily for that week

Statistics Canada Data
(formerly CANSIM) Provides fast and easy access to a large range of statistics in Canada

Census Program 
Canadian government website for the Census

Canadian Census Analyser

Canadian Open Data portals including Using Open Dat

CMHC Housing Market Information Portal and Data and Research 
Canadian authority on housing information, portal provides an interactive tool that will enable you to find up-to-date information on specific geographic regions.  Statistics and data on housing starts, rental markets and more

BC Stats
provincial agency for statistics, providing "high quality data intelligence about British Columbia’s citizens, economy & government," including People, Population & Community

Data BC BC Government Data Catalogue
thousands of datasets from across the province

City of Vancouver Open Data Portal

See also:  Statistical resources SFU Library page as well as Statistical Sources databases. For further assistance, contact 


U.S. Government Open Data 

United States of America
(U.S. Census Bureau) National and State information

FCSM Data Releases 
Federal Committee on Statistical Methodology

Statistical Abstract of the United States
(2013-) "comprehensive summary of statistics on the social, political, and economic organization of the United States" 

California Policy Lab

State of Working America Data Library
Economic Policy Institute


European Union statistical office dedicated to providing high-quality statistics on Europe

World Development Indicators 
(World Bank, annual) interactive access tool for over 600 development indicators including economic, social, environmental, business, & technology for more than 208 countries. See also the World Bank open data DataBank and World Bank Open Data 

OECD iLibrary
(Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) country studies, forecasting publications, reports, periodicals, and socio-economic databases
See also: OECD Data 

IMD World Competitiveness
 (1989-) measuring the competitiveness of nations, with data based on statistics from the World Bank, OECD and the United Nations as well as the IMD's Executive Opinion Survey.  See also IMD World Competitive Year book

World Governance Indicators  
(World Bank 1996-present)  reports aggregate and individual governance indicators for the following dimensions: violence and accountability; political stability and absence of violence; government effectiveness; regulatory quality; rule of law; control of corruption

International Monetary Fund (IMF)
(1945-) Comparative international economic data: time series summarizing every country's balance of payments, as well as  data on trade and reserves, monetary expansion and contraction, government surpluses and deficits, production, prices and interest rates

and: IMF data  International Monetary Fund provides data, information, and research to ensure the stability of the international monetary system - same?

Human Development Statistics  (UN Development Programme)
"measure of achievement in the basic dimensions of human development across countries"

ILO statistics and data
International Labour Organization, including ILOSTAT 

IMF Data
International Financial Statistics, Balance of Payment Statistics, Government Finance Statistics, and Direction of Trade Statistics

United Nations

UN Comtrade
"Detailed global trade data", including data visualization

UN  Environment Statistics;   Department of Social and Economic Affairs (SDGs) ; UNSD Department of Economic and Social Affairs

United Nations and agency statistics, covering economic, social, financial and development topics - search alphabetically, by sources or by topics

Global Health Observatory   
World Health Organization (WHO) "data and analyses on global health priorities"

Open Access UK Data Service

See also Foreign direct investment (FDI) data section of BUS 431: Business with East Asian Countries