Data in International Politics

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This project emerges from the observation that data are becoming increasingly important in the study of international politics. The data revolution is transforming all disciplines, not least that of international studies. However, undergraduate students have a weak understanding of the meaning of data and are generally ill equipped for exploiting increasing opportunities to access large amounts of data (e.g., by browsing across different online sources and datasets), and for wrangling and producing outputs with these data. This deficiency results in missing opportunities to use available data for gaining knowledge and contributing to the field’s progress.

This project aims to close the existing gap between students and the data that international institutions, research centers and universities make available for the general public, with the final goal of offering the tools that can hopefully help to transform all this information into knowledge. With these goals in mind, the book focuses on three key learning objectives:

  • Understanding the data: Students should be able to understand how data relates to key concepts of international politics. Therefore, the book has a strong methodological component in teaching how to assess the quality of data, how to distinguish the among different sources of information and the problems associated with each of them, and how to construct composite indexes and scales.
  • Getting the data: Students of international politics should be able to know where to find the relevant data associated with different topics. Therefore, the book includes three thematic chapters which show the key socioeconomic, political, and relational concepts, and display a wide list of databases associated with each group.
  • Using the data: Students should be able to work with data associated with key concepts of international politics. Therefore, the book intends to have a strong practical component. It uses about 50 datasets that can be accessed online to provide examples, figures, tables, and exercises to explore the data.

According to these objectives, the project encompasses the following products:

  • Data Analysis in International Politics:
  • Data in International Politics:
  • Web teaching resources:
  • Dissemination in form of short articles:
Jordi Mas Elias
Jordi Mas Elias
Professor of International Politics

My research interests include political economy, international politics, regionalism, and methodology in social sciences.