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Statistics Sources: United States

This Guide will help you find a variety of statistical sources published in books and the on the Internet.

Federal Government Sources

Think Tanks and Private Organizations

Many of these groups use federal and international statistics to produce reports on a variety of topics.

  • American Enterprise Institute - this conservative organization "seeks to defend the principles and improve the institutions of American freedom and democratic capitalism” through “limited government, private enterprise, individual liberty and responsibility, vigilant and effective defense and foreign policies, political accountability, and open debate.”
  • Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs - publishes reports on national security, science and technology, environmental policy and diplomacy.
  • Brooking Institution - "conducts research and education in a number of social sciences, including economics, metropolitan policy, governance, foreign policy, and global economy and development."
  • Cato Institute - a libertarian-leaning think tank with a mission to “to broaden the parameters of public policy debate to allow consideration of the traditional American principles of limited government, individual liberty, free markets, and peace.”
  • Center for American Progress - this liberal-leaning group issues reports on many public policy topics.
  • Council on Foreign Relations - conducts research on foreign policy matters and issues concerning globalization.
  • Earth Institute - the goals of the Earth Institute at Columbia University are to "advance the basic understanding of earth science" and to "apply that knowledge to decisions made by governments and businesses around the world."
  • Heritage Foundation - a conservative think tank that produces opinion pieces and reports promoting conservative issues in politics.
  • Human Rights Watch - conducts research about human rights issues and actively promotes human rights around the world.
  • National Bureau of Economic Research - "a private, non-profit, non-partisan organization" that produces economic reports on commodities, energy, inequality and taxation, among other areas.
  • RAND Corporation - publishes reports on a wide variety of issues of interest to the U.S. government and policy makers.
  • Urban Institute - founded by the Lyndon Johnson administration, this liberal group conducts research on urban problems, from housing to crime.
  • USAFacts - an amazing data-rich site created by Steve Balmer of Microsoft and others designed to illustrate where federal tax funds come from and where they go - an annual report for government modeled on the annual reports that public companies produce.