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International Organizations, Economic Development & Poverty

Background: Introduction | General Information & Search Engines

Article Databases: International | Regional

Government Organizations: International Organizations | Regional Development Banks

Statistical Sources: International | Regional | National

Aid & Country Information: Development Aid | Information by Country | Translation & News Services


This guide provides an introduction to information sources on economic and political development issues world-wide. Additional information can be found in libraries like the Environmental Design Library and the Long Business and Economics Library

See also the library research guides on International Statistics, International Trade and Financial Institutions, Non Governmental Organizations, the World Bank, and the International Monetary Fund.

General Information and Search Engines

Global Economic Prospects. Published by the World Bank Development Prospects Group annually. Include forecasts for the global economy and long-term global scenarios. Chapters vary from year on topics on development and poverty reduction.

Human Development Report. HD72.H8: Main. Latest in Doe Ref - Gov/Stat. The web s ite includes the UNDP flagship publication the Human Development Report, as well as national human development reports from over 250 countries and regions.

Least Developed Countries Report. HC59.7.L3219: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Gov/Stat.

Living Standards Measurement Studies (LSMS). Household data surveys collected by country governments and financed by the World Bank on poverty and development. See also the LSMS working paper series.

Rural Poverty Knowledgebase.. Portal of projects and programmes on poverty issues affecting countries world wide. From the International Fund for Agticultural Development (IFAD)

Rural Poverty Portal. Excellent portal also "powered by" the International Fund for Agricultural development on a wide range of poverty issues, country reports and development strategies, from international agencies world wide, including development banks and other international organizations.

PovertyNet. Gateway to World Bank Poverty measurement, analysis and reduction strategies. Includes topical and country listings as well as data on poverty and inequality.

Trade and Development Report. Main - Latest in GREF. From the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.

World Bank Country Information. Web portal of World Bank publications by country. See also the World Bank Country Study series of reports.  In the online catalogs do a series search for world bank country study

World Bank E-library (UCB Access Only). Database for hundreds of full-text World Bank publications. Topics covered include economics, public policy, education, international development, gender, the environment, and more.

World Development Report. HC59.7.A1 W6: Govt Refe - Latest in Doe Ref-Govt/Stat. From the World Bank

World Development Sources. Enormous portal of World Bank documents, including working papers, country information, evaluation reports, working papers, and project appraisals.

World Economic and Social Survey. HC59.A25.W6: Main - Latest in GREF. From the United Nations Economic and Social Council.

World Economic Outlook. HC59 W64: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Govt/Stat. From the IMF.

Article Databases -- International

AccessUN. Indexes United Nations documents and publications including Official Records, UN journals, conferences, resolutions, declarations, meeting records, UN Sales Publications, and treaties. (Microfiche set - GREF Microfiche 10982).

CIAO (Columbia International Affairs Online). (UCB Access Only). International affairs database, with conference proceedings, working papers, and books, journal abstracts, and links to international affairs web sites.

EconLit (UCB Access Only). Comprehensive index to scholarly journal articles in Economics. It also lists books and dissertations, and indexes articles within collective works. Coverage from1969 to the present.

Geography (UCB Access Only). Covers the international literature in international development issues. Coverage from 1990 to the present.

IDEAS. Largest bibliographic database on economics on the Internet, this site offers citations to thousands of full-text economics working papers and articles from peer-reviewed economics journals.

Industrial Development Abstracts. From the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO). Covers industrial governance, technology, small business development, environmental management, agro-industries and industrial energy.

International Bibliography of the Social Sciences. (UCB Access Only). Multidisciplinary database indexing journals, books, chapters, and reviews in economics, political science, and sociology, from more than 100 countries.

PAIS International (UC Access Only). International database for materials in public affairs. Topics include agriculture, banking, demographics, the environment, finance, government, law, and political science. Coverage from 1972 to the present.

PolicyFile (UCB Access Only). Indexes research and publication abstracts in public policy. Access to home pages, e-mail addresss, and selected full text.

USAID Development Experience Clearinghouse. Online resource for international development documentation, with over 14,000 documents available for download. Database is browseable by country and by subject.

UNBISnet. Citations for UN publications and documents from the United Nations Dag Hammarskjöd Library in New York and the UN Library in Geneva. Also includes speeches, voting records, and resolutions. The majority is full-text.

Women's Studies International (UCB Access Only). Indexes books, journals, magazines, newsletters, proceedings, dissertations, and web sites related to research and commentary on women's issues, feminism, and gender.

Worldwide Political Science Abstracts (UCB Access Only). Provides citations, abstracts in political science, international relations, law, and public administration, from 1984 to present.

Article Databases -- Regional

ABSEES Online Database. (UCB Access Only). Indexes journal articles, books, dissertations, government publications, and online resources on East and Central Europe, Russia, and the former Soviet Union. Covers recent years of the print equivalent, American Bibliography of Slavic and East European Studies.

Africa-Wide NiPAD. (UCB Access Only). Multi-disciplinary resource on Africa including an electronic version of African Studies Abstracts, which contain more than 353,000 references from 19th century - present. (UCB Access Only). Contains articles from 120 news publications throughout Africa. Also includes press releases and documents from 200 governments and non-governmental organizations in and outside of Africa.

Bibliography of Asian Studies (BAS) (UCB Access Only). Contains records on all subjects (especially humanities and social sciences) pertaining to East, Southeast, and South Asia published worldwide from 1971 to the present.

Database of the Russian National Bibliography. (UCB Access Only). Comprised of several periodical publications of the Knizhnaia Palata. Searchable in both Cyrillic and in transliteration.

Handbook of Latin American Studies (HLAS). Citations in the area of Latin American studies from journals, books, and conferences. Coverage from 1935. Sources are selected and annotated by scholars from the Library of Congress.

Index Islamicus. (UCB Access Only). Indexes literature on Islam, the Middle East and the Muslim world. Over 3,000 journals are included, together with conference proceedings, monographs, multi-authored works and book reviews.

Quarterly Index to Africana Periodical Literature Index, published by the Library of Congress Nairobi Office, covers over 300 selected periodicals from 29 African countries. Also includes publications of non-governmental organizations.

International Government Organizations

United Nations Economic and Social Council. The United Nations Economic and Social Council is the UN principal organ for coordination of economic work of the five regional economic commissions, listed below.

United Nations and Business Web site. Provides information on partnerships and alliances between the UN and the private sector to help further the UN Millennium Devleopment Goals.

United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL). United Nations commission with a general mandate to further the harmonization of international trade law.

United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). United Nations body promoting the integration of developing countries into the world economy. See also the UNCTAD/UNDP Global Programme on Globalization and the UNCTAD/WTO International Trade Center.

United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO). United Nations agency mandated to promote industrial development and international industrial cooperation.

World Bank Group. Association of five closely linked institutions dedicated to fighting poverty and improving living standards worldwide. These institutions include:

Regional Organizations & Development Banks

Regional organizations are often rich sources of information relevant to development issues. For additional information see also the UC Berkeley library pages on Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs).

African Development Bank. Regional development institution engaged in mobilising resources towards the economic and social progress of its member countries.

African Development Review. African Development Bank. HC800.A1.A355: Main - Unbound issues in current periodicals.

Asian Development Bank. Multilateral development institution focused on economic development in the Asian region.

Asian Development Review. Asian Development Bank. HC411. A7545: Main - unbound in current periodicals

Caribbean Development Bank. Regional financial and economic development institution for the Caribbean. Includes Caribbean and selected industrial nations.

Central Banks Web. Comprehensive listing of Central Banks, from the Bank for International Settlements

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. Development bank founded in 1991 to provide project financing for Easterm Europe and Central Asia.

European Central Bank. Central Bank for the currency of the European Union (the euro).

InterAmerican Development Bank. Regional development bank focusing on economic development and technical cooperation projects for Latin America.

IDB America.  InterAmerican Development Bank. HG3881.A1.I2: Main - unbound in current periodicals.

Statistical Sources: International

For and additional and slightly more comprehensive list of statistical sources by topic, see the UC Berkeley library page on international statistics.

Commodity Trade Statistics Database (COMTRADE) (UCB Access Only). Database for commodity trade between countries for 40 years. Most data are reported according to HS version 1996. For more help with the database see the first-time user help page.

FAOSTAT. (UCB Access Only - Doe Library 202 and Giannini Foundation Library) Statistical databases covering agriculture, food production, trade, forest products, fisheries and more.

Global Development Finance (UCB Access Only). Statistical data for 138 countries reporting public debt to the World Bank. Includes external debt stocks and flows, key debt ratios, composition of long-term debt etc.

Global Urban Observatory. United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UNCHS) collection of databases, with statistical data on urban indicators, human settlements, and city profiles worldwide.

Human Development Report Statistics. Statistics from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). Links to the text of national human development reports from over 250 countries and regions.

Lexis/Nexis Statistical (UCB Access Only). International statistical index with records from: American Statistics Index (ASI) [1973-present], Statistics Reference Index (SRI) [1980-present], and Index to International Statistics (IIS) [1983-present]. Materials in ASI and IIS are available on microfiche in GREF. Most materials in SRI available on microfiche in The Business Library

Millennium Indicators Database. Database of indicators measuring progress towards the Millennium Development goals, adopted by the United Nations Secretariat, IMF, OECD and World Bank.

Official Statistics on the Web. Access to social, economic and general data from official government sources.  Includes statistical offices, central banks and government agencies. Features a good subject list.

UNCTAD Statistical Databases Online. Includes a number of numeric databases dealing with trade and development statistics, including the UNCTAD Handbook of Statistics, the Foreign Direct Investment Database, and UNCTAD Trains on the Internet - indicators of Trade Control Measures (both Tariff and Non-Tariff).

UNIDO Industrial Statistics Industrial statistics from the United Nations Industrial Development Organization. UCB subscribes to the Database at the 3-digit level of ISIC (Rev. 2), accessible on the Berkeley Library CD ROM Network (BLIN).

United Nations Statistical Common Database. (UCB Access Only). Provides economic, social, cultural, and demographic indicators for countries of the world. Some data therein reaches back to the 1940s with some projections to 2050.

World Development Indicators (UCB Only). Time series data from 1960 for 207 countries in the areas of population, labour, education, economics, the environment and much more. First choice for many statistical indicators.

World Income Inequality Database. Information for over 140 countries on income inequalities at both cross-country and time series levels from 1950-98.

Statistical Sources: Regional


African Census Project. African census microdata from 15 countries across the continent. User registration required.

African Development Report. HC800 A1 A37: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Gov/Stat.

Africa South of the Sahara: African Statistics. Important site featuring nearly every statistical agency that generates data on Africa.

African Statistical Yearbooks. HA1995 U51 Main - Latest for each region in Doe Ref-Gov/Stat. See also statistical yearbooks for individual African countries.

COMESA in Figures. The statistics section of COMESA (Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa), a trading block of 20 member states. The site features economic, GDP, trade, and population data.

Economic Report on Africa. HC800.A1.E19: Main - Latest in GREF.

International Historical Statistics, Africa, Asia & Oceania, 1750-1993. HA4675.M55 1998: Doe Ref - Gov/Stat.

Statistics South Africa. Large web portal from Statistics South Africa, containing full-text of most government publications. Browse by category.

World Bank Africa Database. (Doe Reference: HC800.A1 W677). Contains indicators of macro-economic and social data for African countries and regional groups with annual time series going back to 1965. Available on the Berkeley Library CD ROM Network -- ask at any library reference desk for assistance.


Asian Development Outlook. HC411 A1A84: Main - Latest in GREF.

China Data Online (UCB Only). Monthly and annual macroeconomic statistics, city and county data, industrial sector data, and census updates for China. Click "direct access for institutional users."

Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific. JX1977 A62E3: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Gov/Stat. (browse publications list for online access).

International Historical Statistics, Africa, Asia & Oceania, 1750-1993. HA4675.M55 1998: Doe Ref - Gov/Stat.

Statistical Abstract for the Region of the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia. HA1660 M3 Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Govt/Stat.

Statistical Data Locator. Compiled by the Library at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. Development, economic, and trade indicators, plus census statistics for Asia, South/Southeast Asia and Oceania.

Statistical Indicators for Asia and the Pacific. HC412 S72: Latest 2 years in GREF.

Statistical Yearbook for Asia and the Pacific. JX1977 A62S76: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Govt/Stat.


Council of European Social Science Data Archives (CESSDA) Access to social science data archives produced by CESSDA's member countries.

Destasis. Data from Statistiches Bundesamt, the German National Statistics agency on a wide variety of topics, including population, trade, prices, wages, the environment, land and agriculture and much more. Login and password required: e-mail the international documents librarian for assistance.

The East European and Soviet Data Handbook: Political, Social, and Developmental Indicators. HA1446.S53: Main - latest in GREF.

Economic Survey of Europe. JX1977 A63E26: Main - Latest in GREF.

Eurostat.  (Some Features UCB Only). Publications and statistics from the EU. (Logon permits enhanced downloads. Ask at the Doe Reference Desk or contact the International Documents Librarian).

International Historical Statistics: Europe, 1750-1993. HA1107.M5 1998: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Gov/Stat.

Recent Demographic Developments in Europe. Strasbourg: Council of Europe Press. HB204 .R41: Main - Latest in Govt Refe. For accompanying CD-ROM ask at Doe Reference Desk.

Statistical Yearbook on Candidate and South-East European Countries. HC244.A1 S738: Main - Latest in GREF.

United Nations Economic Commission for Europe: Environmental and Human Settlements Database. United Nations data on housing and building statistics in Europe, from 1990 to present for 53 countries.

United Nations Economic Commission for Europe: Gender Statistics Database. Gender data from the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe. Includes population, labor, education, public life, health, crime, and violence.

United Nations Economic Commission for Europe: Population Statistics. Demographic data for Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States for population, mortality, marriage and divorce.

Latin America

Economic Survey of Latin America and the Caribbean. JX1977 A64E3: Main - Latest in GREF. For accompanying CD-ROM ask at Doe Reference Desk.

Economic and Social Progress in Latin America. HG3881.I45 A3: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Govt/Stat.

International Historical Statistics: the Americas 1750-1993. HA175.M55 1998 Doe Ref.

Latin America & the Caribbean Development Statistics. Wide range of economic and social data, derived primarily from the World Bank, and compiled by USAID Includes link to the Latin America and the Caribbean: Selected Economic and Social Data 2005.

Latin American Statistical Resources. From Cornell University. Links to national and international sources.

Statistical Abstract of Latin America. HA931 C3: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Gov/Stat.

Statistical Yearbook for Latin America and the Caribbean. JX1977 A64B6: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Gov/Stat.

Middle East

The Arab World, Turkey, and the Balkans (1878-1914). HA4556.M35 1982: Main, latest in GREF.

Compendium of Social Statistics and Indicators. HA4666 .A22: Main - Latest in GREF. Compendium of Social Statistics and Indicators. HA4666 .A22: Main - Latest in GREF.

Demographic and Related Socio-economic Data Sheets for Countries of the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia. HA1660.E27a: Main - Latest in GREF.

SESRTCIC Statistical Database. From the Statistical, Economic and Social Research Training Centre for Islamic Countries, a subsidiary organ of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC).

Statistical Abstract of the ESCWA Region. HA1660.M3: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Gov/Stat.

Survey of Economic and Social Developments in the ESCWA Region. HC415.15.A1.S85: Main - Latest in GREF.

Statistical Sources: National

GREF collects statistical yearbooks from most countries. The latest issue from each country is shelved in GREF. The yearbook for a particular country can be located by doing a subject search in the online catalogs by [country name] statistics periodicals".

GREF also collects census reports for individual countries. To see a list of all the censuses we have for a country do a subject search in the online catalogs for [country name] census.

See also the GREF Research Guides on Foreign Statistical Yearbooks  and Foreign Government Resources and International Statistics.

Development Aid

To find reviews and other reports documenting flows of foreign assistance from countries with significant foreign assistance plans, do a subject search in the online catalogs:

economic assistance, british
economic assistance, canadian africa
economic assistance, japanese developing countries
economic assistance, american asia

See also the UC Berkeley library research guide on the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and International Trade and Financial Institutions.

AccessUNDP (UCB Access Only). Index to the United Nations Development Programme Project Reports by UN headquarters between the years 1972-1998. Most are in the UNDP microfiche collection (GREF  Microfiche 24773)

Development co-operation : Efforts and Policies of the Members of the Development Assistance Committee. HC60 O72: Main - Latest in GREF.

Development Co-operation Review Series. Good developmentaid series from the OECD, one of the more important agencies for development aid. See Source OECD for online versions. HC59.8.D48: Main - Latest in GREF.

Reality of Aid: An Independent Review of Development Cooperation. HC59.8 R43: Main - Latest in GREF.

Source OECD. Leading International Organization for Foreign Aid data. Includes International Development Statistics as well as statistical databases on External Debt Statistics and Geographical Distribution of Financial Aid Flows to Developing Countries. Choose the "international development" link on the statistics section.

United Nations Development Programme Annual Report. JX1977.A36514.R4: Main - Latest in GREF; Microfiche 23950 Periodicals.

U.S. Overseas Loans and Grants (Green Book). Loans and grants from the US government each fiscal year by purpose and country. HC60 U53344: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Gov/Stat.

UNDP Human Development Reports Library. Links to hundreds of full-text development reports from over 250 countries and regions world-wide.

United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD). UN agency conducting research on the social dimensions of world development. Includes hundreds of documents on a wide range of social development issues.

USAID Documents. Online resource for USAID international development, with thousands documents available for download. Database is browseable by country and by subject.

World Bank Project Documents . Full-text of World Bank project reports, including evaluation reports, working papers, and project appraisals

World Bank Research Program: Abstracts of Current Studies. HC60.I535b: Main - Latest two years in GREF.

Information by Country

Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). Country Reports and Profiles. (UCB Access Only). Provides analysis and forecasts of the political, economic, and business environment in more than 180 countries. Annual profiles are updated by quarterly reports. Coverage is from 1996 to present.

Europa World Year Book. AY754 E783 Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Govt/Stat.

World Factbook. G122.U56a: Main - Latest in Doe Ref-Govt/Stat.

The following monographic series provide information on particular countries. To see a list of titles and volumes in each series, use Pathfinder do a series search using the title of the monographic series.

Area Handbook Series.  Library of Congress. For print library holdings to do a series search in the online catalogs. Approximately 100 countries and regions are covered.

Industrial Development Review Series. UN Industrial Development Organization. In the online catalogs do a series search for industrial development review.

World Bank Country Information. Encyclopedic web portal of world bank reports and publications by country. See also the World Bank Country Study series of reports.  In the online catalogs do a series search for world bank country study.

Translation and News Services

For additional sources see the library electronic resources finder news category.

Access World News. (UCB Access Only). Indexes over 1000 translated broadcasts, news agency transmissions, wire services, newspapers, magazines and government documents covering politics, economics, culture, business, science, technology, worldwide.

California Ethnic Newspapers (New California Media Online). Contains full-text California ethnic newspapers, many with English translations, some in the vernacular, from 2002 to present.

Foreign Broadcast Information Service Electronic Index (UCB Access Only). Index to the FBIS Daily Reports issued by the U.S. Government covering the world. Translations of broadcasts, newspapers, periodicals, and government statements. Coverage from 1975-1996.

Foreign Language News and Newspapers. A list of freely available newspapers and magazines from Chinese, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, and Russian Sources. Compiled by the MIT Libraries.

LADB (Latin America Data Base). An online news service that provides access to three weekly electronic news bulletins about Mexico (SourceMex), Central America and the Caribbean including Cuba (NotiCen) and South America (NotiSur). LADB is also a searchable archive of over 24,000 articles.

People's Daily (Ren Min Ri Bao). Complete archive of the People's Daily, the national newspaper in China, from the birth of the People's Republic to 2002.

World News Connection (UCB Access Only). Full-text translated transcriptions of radio and TV broadcasts, newspaper articles and periodicals from countries worldwide. A successor to reports from the Foreign Broadcasting Information Service and Joint Publications Research Service.

Area Microfiche 

(in Periodicals Room)

Other holding 


Africa (Sub-Sahara) 12297  
China 948 CCSL (1958-)
East Asia 944  
East Europe 945 IISL
Latin America 946  
Near East & South Asia 12243  
Soviet Union 949 IISL
West Europe 951