International Documents Finding Guide

Guide to Country Information in International Governmental Organization Publications.

Washington, DC : CIS, c1996.

Z 6464 .I6 G85 1996 - Watson Reference

A detailed annotated bibliography of IGO publications which contain country-specific information. It contains a title index and the country members for the IGOs.

Guide to Official Publications of Foreign Countries. 2nd ed.

Bethesda, Md. : CIS, 1997.

Z 7164. G7 G83 1997 - Watson Reference

 A country-by-country annotated bibliography of official publications in 19 categories: guides; bibliographies & catalogs; sources of general information; government directories & organization manuals; statistical yearbooks; laws, regulations, and constitutions; legislative proceedings; statements of the head of government; economic affairs; central bank publications; development plans budget; census; health; labor; education; court reports; environment; human rights & status of women.



The Statesman's Year-book. Annual.

New York : St. Martin's Press, 1864-

JA51 .S73 1988  Watson Reference

Basic information for each country, including a brief bibliography.

Truhart, Peter.

Regents of Nations : Systematic Chronology of States and their Political Representatives in Past and Present : a Biographical Reference Book. 2nd rev. and enl. ed.

Munchen : Saur, 2000-

 JF 37 .T78 2000 - Watson Reference

Worldwide Government Directory. Annual.

Washington, D.C. : Keesings Worldwide, 1981-

JF 37 .L345 – Anschutz Reference

Detailed directory information on the governmental leadership of all counties: official names, titles, and contact information for heads of states, top officials, state agencies, etc.



 Country Background Information & Statistics

BBC News: Country Profiles

Full profiles provide an instant guide to history, politics and economic background of countries. They also include audio and video clips from the BBC archives.

CIA World Fact Book

The Factbook provides national-level information on countries, territories, and dependencies.

Country Indicators for Foreign Policy

The CIFP database includes measures of domestic armed conflict, governance and political instability, militarization, religious and ethnic diversity, demographic stress, economic performance, human development, environmental stress, and international linkages, in the form of over one hundred performance indicators for 196 countries, spanning fifteen years (1985 to 2000) for most indicators. These indicators are drawn from a variety of open sources.

Country Studies/Area Handbook Series

The Country Studies Series presents a description and analysis of the historical setting and the social, economic, political, and national security systems and institutions of countries throughout the world and examines the interrelationships of those systems and the ways they are shaped by cultural factors. At present, 101 countries and regions are covered, published between 1988 and 1998.

Check CLIO under "[country name] a country study" for location of print versions.

Country Profiles: "The profiles offer reasonably current country information independent of the existence of a recently published Country Study and will be updated annually or more frequently as events warrant."

Da Graça, John V.

Heads of State and Government. 2nd ed.

New York : St. Martin's Press ; Basingstoke : Macmillan, 2000.

JF 37 .D3 1985 -  Watson Stacks  (Watson has 1985 ed. only)

Eldis Country Profiles

Links to hundreds of authoritative sites for developing countries, in the areas of: agriculture, environment, poverty, education, gender, health & population, governance, trade, economics, aid, microcredit, and security.

The Europa Year Book. Annual.

London : Europa Publications Limited, c1959-

JN 1 .E85 – Watson Reference

Each country's chapter includes an introductory survey with history and recent political & economic events; a statistical survey; and a directory, information about the political system, government & parties, the press, banking, industry, transport, etc.

Europa's regional volumes have more detailed information about each country: Africa South of the Sahara; Central and South Eastern Europe; Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia; The Far East and Australasia; The Middle East and North Africa; South America, Central America and the Caribbean; Western Europe.

FAO Country Profiles

The Food and Agriculture Organization for the United Nations and its 183 members highlight information as one of the priority areas in fighting hunger and achieving food security. The FAO Country Profiles and Mapping Information System is a pioneering information retrieval tool which groups the organization's vast archive of information on its global activities in agriculture and development in a single area and catalogues it exclusively by country.

Foreign Governments

A comprehensive resource maintained by the GODORT International Documents Task Force and Northwestern University Library.


GeoHive provides demographic and economic statistics for all countries, at both the national and subnational levels. The site is divided into four main parts. One dealing with the whole world and its regions, a second with the major regions, a third with all major countries separately and a fourth with rankings (the most, largest, longest, wealthiest, etc.).

Governments on the WWW

Very detailed links for every country.

IPPF Country Profiles

The profiles compiled by the International Planned Parenthood Federation include brief background information, sections on sexual & reproductive health and family planning services in the country, and statistics on population, fertility and contraception, mortality, health, and education & employment.

International Crisis Group: Reports by Country

Not all countries are represented, just those which are involved or potentially involved in conflict situations.

International Monetary Fund Country Information

IMF operations — which involve surveillance, financial assistance, and technical assistance — have developed to meet the changing needs of its 184 member countries in an evolving world economy.

MSU Global Access, Michigan State University

Provides information about the world - its regions and peoples and important international issues. You can search simultaneously by world region or country and by thematic area.

Allows users to generate graphs based on numerical data extracted from numerous sources. All sources are documented.

OECD by Country

Links only to documents with an individual country focus. Includes both member and non-member economies, but with more information for member countries, especially a statistical profile with over 100 indicators. For links to OECD publications which cover all countries, see SourceOECD, below.

SourceOECD provides full text access to all publications from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

People in the Balance: Population and Natural Resources at the Turn of the Millenium

The focus here is on population,water, land, forests, fisheries,CO2, and biodiversity, with sections on each. Data is also provided for each country, both in tabular form and CSV data sets.

Social Security Web Sites Around the World

Social Security in Other Countries: brief descriptions of programs for each country, from the U.S. Social Security Administration

Social Watch

Social Watch is an international network informed by national citizens' groups aiming at following up the fulfillment of the internationally agreed commitments on poverty eradication and equality. It produces an annual report as well as individual country reports.

UNESCO Institute for Statistics Country Profiles

Country profiles feature key statistics and indicators on education, science and technology, and culture and communication on a country-by-country or regional basis.

World Bank Data by Country

Chose from -- Country at a Glance tables: two pages of key indicators tracing the trends in social and economic development from the last three decades; Data Profile tables: data profiles available here are drawn from the World Development Indicators database. The profiles cover the 208 countries (184 World Bank members and 24 other economies with populations of more than 30,000) and 18 country groups reported on in the World Development Indicators; EdStats: short for Education Statistics, is a comprehensive education statistics database; GenderStats: a database of gender statistics, showing summary gender indicators, basic demographic data, population dynamics, labor force structure, and education and health statistics; HNPStats: short for Health, Nutrition, and Population Statistics offers country data sheets showing summary indicators for health status, health determinants, and health finance.

World Health Organization Country Profiles

Includes basic vital and health statistics, health expenditures, provision/coverage, health system organization and regulation, summary measures, country-specific conditions, and human resources.

Election Information

Administration and Cost of Elections Project

This website is sponsored by the International Foundation for Election Systems, International IDEA, and the United Nations. It attempts "to provide a global electronic information resource that explores alternatives in election administration, functions, processes and costs."

Presents a good background history of the politics and electoral history of each country, along with election statistics and a calendar of elections, 1996 to the present. Now on Wikipedia.

Elections Around the World, from the Parliamentary Library of Australia

Provides a calendar of upcoming elections, with links to research reports and articles about the elections.

International Encyclopedia of Elections.

Washington, D.C. : CQ Press, 2000.

JF 1001 .I57 2000 - Lehman Reference

International Foundation for Election Systems

The International Foundation for Election Systems provides professional advice and technical assistance in promoting democracy and serves as an information clearinghouse on democratic development. Its Election Guide provides international election dates, results, and information, 1998-2003.

LANIC Electoral Observatory

Provides extensive coverage of presidential and legislative elections in Latin America; from the Latin American Network Information Center (LANIC) at the University of Texas.

Lijphart Elections Archive, University of California, San Diego

A research collection of district level election results for approximately 350 national legislative elections in 26 countries. The objective of the Archive is to systematically collect election statistics in as much detail as possible, including, as a minimum, the results at the level of the individual election districts in which votes are converted into seats.

Voter Turnout from 1945 to Date: a Global Report on Political Participation, from the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA)


Political and Legal Systems

Derbyshire, J. Denis.

Encyclopedia of World Political Systems. 2 vols.

Armonk, N.Y. : Sharpe Reference, c2000.

JF 51 .D465 2000 - Watson Reference

Electronic Information System for International Law (EISIL)

An open database of authenticated primary and other materials across the breadth of international law, which until now have been scattered in libraries, archives and specialized web sites. Created by the American Society of International Law.

International Constitutional Law

A service of the University of Würzburg; it provides the full text of the constitutions for over 80 countries, in English translation, with brief constitutional, policital, and electoral history. For other countries, it provides brief information.

Maddex, Robert L.

Constitutions of the World. 2nd ed.

Washington, D.C. : CQ Press, c2001.

K3157.E5 M33 2001 -  Law Library Reference

Watson Library Reference has 1995 only.

PARLINE Database, from the Inter-Parliamentary Union

Contains information about parliaments in over 190 countries, including structure, leader, percentage of women, term, sex, political group, and elections.

Parties Around the World, from Electionworld, now on Wikipedia

Provides links to political parties, by country and by type.

Political Resources on the Net

Listings of political sites available on the Internet sorted by country, with links to Parties, Organizations, Governments, Media and more from all around the world.

Project DIAL (Development of the Internet for Asian Law), from the Asian Development Bank

Not just limited to Asia; links to legislative resources from many countries, searchable.

Televised Legislatures Around the World, from C-SPAN

Several dozen countries, from Albania to Wales, now offer live televised coverage of their legislative bodies.

World Encyclopedia of Parliaments and Legislatures. 2 vols.

Washington, D.C. : Congressional Quarterly, c1998.

JF 511 .W67 1998 - Watson Reference and Anschutz Reference

The entry for each country gives information about its political system and background, elections and parties, legislative process, selection of the executive branch, budget, etc. Includes a short bibliography.

World Law

A global catalog and search engine for law.