Global Restrictions on Religion

The Americas, Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa and the Asia-Pacific region all had increases in overall restrictions on religion in 2011. Government restrictions declined slightly in Europe, but social hostilities increased. Asia and the Pacific had the sharpest increase in government restrictions, though the level of social hostilities remained roughly the same.

By contrast, social hostilities edged up in sub-Saharan Africa, but government restrictions stayed about the same. Both government restrictions and social hostilities increased slightly in the Americas.

Best Highlights of 2013

Thank you for being with us this entire year! 2013 was great and busy so we've collected the whole bunch of fascinating visualizations and important changes. And we invite you to recollect the best of them with us. 

This year we were trying hard to make the service useful for absolutely everyone. We do believe that data should be easily accessible and understandable both for data enthusiasts and data experts. So all the tools and all the changes that we applied this year went that way with us.

So let's review the best highlights of 2013!

Europe Demographic Forecast up to 2060

In this visualization it is presented demographic projections for European countries from two sources: Eurostat and United Nations.

Charts and data below are focused on the zero-migration variant of forecast, i.e. estimates of natural population change only due to births and deaths. That is why predictions are based on the assumptions of levels of fertility rate and life expectancy at birth which will prevail across the forecast period in the given country.

Rule of Law

The World Justice Project report indicates that the United States is far behind other modern nations like Sweden and the Netherlands in maintaining a relevant and applicable rule of law among its government, the public, and other nongovernmental influences.

View full dashboard

Meet Our New Dataset Viewer

Today we are pleased to announce the launch of our new Dataset Viewer. Please try it out and see how we've brought visual intelligence efforts to a completely new level.

With new Dataset Viewer you'll make sure that data analysis and data visualization aren't really hard to do if you have a handy and easy tool for that.

For now click this dataset link and you'll proceed straight to a new Dataset Viewer. But before you play with data or build a viz, let us tell you what is so amazing about it.

Timeline for Pie Charts

Good news for pie chart lovers! Now you can build beautiful visualizations on the go and display as much data over the time as you need: we have added timeline to pie charts.

This option now is set by default. Though you can still play with options and enable timeline so the pie chart contains multiple rings corresponding with the number of years in time selection.

G20 Economic Forecast 2013-2015 and up to 2060

Present dashboard integrates most recent medium and long term forecasts of key economic indicators for G20 countries estimated by major international organizations, namely, World Bank, IMF, United Nations, OECD, European Commission and the Economist Intelligence Unit.

The data presented covers projections of real GDP growth, characterizing country's output of final goods and services; consumer price inflation, as a measure of price level movements; unemployment rate or percent of those willing and able to work but cannot find it; current account balance, providing an idea of a country's position in the international exchange; government debt that shows relative value of government liabilities affecting its stability and confidence level.

The Big Mac Index

The Big Mac Index invented by The Economist is an informal way of measuring the purchasing power parity (PPP) between two currencies. Calculation of PPPs is based on the assumption that the dollar cost for a Big Mac in a particular country would be the same as in the United States.

The indicator is chosen by The Economist as a measure of PPP and is based on the fact that the ingredients used in the preparation of Big Mac are the same over the globe, and hence variation in dollar cost in any country is a direct measure on the valuation of the currency. The study also points to the fact that, some of the developing countries, purposely undervalues their currency, in an effort to be competitive in the global market.

Modern Slavery

According to Walk Free Foundation there are an estimated 29.8 million people enslaved around the world. The countries with the highest numbers of enslaved people are India, China, Pakistan, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Russia, Thailand, Democratic Republic of Congo, Myanmar and Bangladesh. Taken together, these countries account for 76% of enslaved people around the world.

In 2013, modern slavery takes many forms, and is known by many names: slavery, forced labour or human trafficking. Whatever term is used, the significant characteristic of all forms of modern slavery is that it involves one person depriving another people of their freedom: their freedom to leave one job for another, their freedom to leave one workplace for another, their freedom to control their own body.

Environment Performance Index

As per the study conducted by Yale University on environment performance, Switzerland, Latvia and Norway came up as the strongest  performers and Iraq, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan emerged as the weakest performers, for the year 2012.

EPI ranks countries based on various indicators, covering environment, human health, ecosystem vitality etc.

Most Popular Aircrafts of Europe

On average Airbus continues to dominate the commercial air carrier segment of Europe, as for the 2012 statistics. In the passenger space, Airbus tops the list followed by Boeing and Embraer.

However, Boeing maintains a clear lead in the cargo space, over other aircraft manufactures. Fresh purchase of A380 model of Airbus and 787 Dreamliner of Boeing by Emirates and Ethiad Airways is expected to boost the order books of both these manufactures.

Integrated Google Drive Picker with Data Upload Tool

As soon as we allow our users to upload their private data for analysis and visualization, we pay much attention to providing them with the comfortable tool for that and ease the process of importing data to the system.

A couple of months ago we released a feature of importing data straight from Google Drive and today we have upgraded this feature for you.

Before that when you had to upload some data to the system, you had to use our custom dialog box. But for now we have integrated standard Google Drive Picker to make data upload more usual and visually familiar to you.

Current Account Balance of Top 5 Economies

Germany and China continues to post strong current account balance surplus, while Japan and France showed weakness in their respective CAB positions. United States on the other hand, indicates a declining trend in its current account deficit.

CAB surplus posted by Germany is the result of increased exports to foreign markets, increased investments in foreign shares by risk averse investors and import reduction by focusing on domestic products.

Ease of Doing Business Across the World

Doing Business assesses country regulations applied to small- and medium-size enterprises across 10 major areas of doing business from the registration of new entity to the resolving insolvency.

Thriving small- and medium-size enterprises are one of the major drivers behind the creation of new jobs and growth of national wealth. That is why governments should provide such enterprises with prosperous environment, i.e. the rules that guarantee low transactional costs of time and money as well as predictability of economic interaction between the stakeholders.

Heatmaps in Tables

When you have to visualize large amounts of multi-dimensional data and put them into a well-suited table, it can turn into a far from easy deal until you use heatmaps.

Heatmaps are great in displaying data with multicolored cells that ease the process of getting insights. You literally can find important information and points at first sight. A regular table don't let users grasp data's meaning and see all the trends in the displayed numbers in such a simple and quick way.

How Old is European Aircraft Fleet?

As of 2011, Germany is the country with the second largest aircraft fleet in Europe and, at the same time, the oldest one: 20% of its aircraft is more than 20 years old and this share is growing: compared to previous year the share of old aircraft increased by 3% from 17% in 2010. Concerning new aircraft, its number in Germany increased over 2011 as well, but to the much lesser extent.

The same cannot be said about Turkey which is the leading country in building up new aircraft fleet: accounting for 8% of European new aircraft Turkey gained its number by 18 in 2011, becoming the top country by new aircraft growth.

African Governance Index

Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG) - is comprehensive statistical tool assessing African countries' performance in provision of public goods and services.

Consisting of 133 variables derived from 32 independent sources IIAG measures governance performance across 4 pillars: Safety and Rule of Law, Participation and Human Rights, Sustainable Economic Opportunity and Human Development. All-embracing nature of the index makes it fairly the best instrument for setting long-term political, social and economical goals concerning the African region.

Try data-driven web browsing with World Data Finder

This week we have officially released the public beta of World Data Finder - our new extension for Chrome.

By using World Data Finder, you’ll be able to get data and charts relevant to pages you visit in a single click and reduce time for fact-checking, data discovery and analysis with a simple tool.

And as Jordan Novet said about World Data Finder in his article for VentureBeat, "the browser extension could become one of the tools that helps turn the world into a more data-driven place, where decisions are influenced by what the numbers say instead of what the most influential member of the team says."

Greenhouse Gases Country Profile

It is considered that Greenhouse Gases (GHG) emissions in the atmosphere venting from anthropogenic sources are in part responsible for the global warming, which is the part of global climate change. While the fact of global warming itself still remains under discussion, the anthropogenic influence on climate cannot be rejected at list due to the fact that average temperature on Earth has increased by 0.7 degrees Celsius since the start of the Industrial Revolution.

R&D expenditures and productivity

According to endogenous growth theories, innovations is one of the key drivers of economic growth. To boost innovations and technical progress, countries spend a lot of money on Research and Development.

In most developed countries expenditures on research and development exceed 2% of GDP. And about 70-75% of R&D expenditures are covered by private business corporations.

Big Data Vendor Revenue and Market Forecast 2012-2017

The Big Data market is on the verge of a rapid growth spurt that will see it near the $50 billion mark worldwide within the next five years.

The analysis in this in-depth research report highlights Wikibon’s five-year forecast for the Big Data market as a whole as well as vendor revenue estimates. It includes full analysis of the leading market growth catalysts and advice for enterprise CIOs and business leaders looking to capitalize on Big Data and business analytics.

Did the US Shutdown Affect the Global Economy?

Government shutdown, in American politics, refers to a temporary halt in government services when lawmakers cannot pass the necessary funding measures in time.

It's been the first Government Shutdown since United States federal government shutdowns of 1995–96 during Clinton presidency. 

After the US Government went into a shutdown on October 1st, 2013, and only essential services functioned for 2 weeks, the US Congress voted on the night of October 16th, 2013, to avert a debt default and allow the government to work again.

Have you tried Knoema Market so far?

It's been a month since we've launched Knoema Market and it is considered to be our biggest release of the year.

You might have seen or even tried to participate in some projects at some point, though since the first day of launch and till today we haven't made any post about our brand new marketplace, so here we go.

Global Competitiveness

"The Global Competitiveness Index (GCI) is a comprehensive tool that measures the microeconomic and macroeconomic foundations of national competitiveness. It is composed of 12 "pillars", or categories.

Competitiveness is the set of institutions, factors and policies that determine the level of productivity of a country taking into account its level of development", - World Economic Forum.

According to overall index, Switzerland is the most competitive country in the world retaining leading position since 2008 after it outpaced United States which, in turn, worsened its position and moved from the first to the fifth place over the same period. While competitiveness is positively related to the wealth of the nation expressed through the GDP per capita, the relation between competitiveness and happiness seems to follow negative square pattern: middle level of competitiveness corresponds to the highest level of happiness.

Global Petrol Prices

All world countries have an access to the same petroleum prices as on international markets though countries governments decide to impose different taxes according to their economic policies. As a result, the retail prices of gasoline differ considerably across countries.

Explore global petrol prices as for July 2013 on the charts and a map below and see how low gasoline can cost in producing countries in South America and Middle East in contrast with the other world.

In some cases, like in Venezuela, the government even subsidizes gasoline and therefore people over there pay close to nothing to drive their cars.

G20 Consumer Price Index

The G20 CPI provides a timely measure of inflation for the G20. In the future, the G20 CPI will become part of the regular OECD monthly News Release on CPI at around one month after the reference period.

Annual inflation in the G20 area was 3.0% in the year to August 2013, down from 3.2% in the year to July 2013.

The G20 CPI aggregate reflects diverging patterns among the world’s largest economies. India, Argentina, Indonesia and Turkey experienced the highest annual inflation rates (equal to or above 8.0%) in August 2013, while Japan, France, Canada and Italy had the lowest annual inflation rate (between 0.9% and 1.2%).

How to Predict Recession

Yesterday the world got to know that the 2013 Nobel Prize in economics was awarded to Eugene Fama, Lars Peter Hansen and Robert Shiller for their "empirical analysis of asset prices". According to the awarding committee, their work had "laid the foundation for the current understanding of asset prices".

And then we came up with our new viz of the day in which we actually empirically try to find the answer to the question: How to predict economic recession?

The analysis of yield curve may help to predict upcoming economic recession. Yield curve shows how interest rates of debt (usually government bonds) change with the increase of its term to maturity.

Usually it is considered by investors that lending money for the long term is more risky than lending for the short term, as it is harder to make any predictions for the longer time horizon, i.e. how the world will change say in 10 years. That is why long-term interest rates are usually higher than the short-term ones. Note, "usually" means “in good times” or when people have somewhat robust expectations about near future.

FDI at the Global Level

Foreign Direct Investment (or FDI) – is an investment made by a company or entity based in one country into a company or entity based in another county.

Open economies with skilled workforces and good growth prospects tend to attract larger amounts of foreign direct investment than closed, highly regulated economies.

Explore World Data Atlas in your native language

It's not a secret that users from all around the Globe have fall in love with our World Data Atlas so it's turned to be our most popular application. 

For a long time all the content of Atlas was in English. But nowadays, and it's more than just reasonably, we are on the way of making World Data Atlas multilingual. We do care that anyone could use Atlas with more comfort and profit.

Today we are glad to invite users to explore Atlas in Japanese, Chinese, French, Russian, and German

Moving towards Knowledge Economy

To what extent a country is prepared for the transition to knowledge-based economy, i.e. the economy that is able to efficiently stock, process and transfer knowledge, needed for a country to maintain competitiveness in today's modern world?

To shed some light on this complicated question and correspondingly to help country leaders to choose strategically right directions, the World Bank developed instrument known as Knowledge Economy Index. Based on 148 indicators which serve as proxies for 4 Knowledge Economy pillars, exactly, Economic Incentive and Institutional Regime, Education and Labor, Innovation and Information & Communications Technology, this index assesses 146 countries throughout the world on their ability to compete in international innovative environment and to supply new knowledge.

Get most out of data with apps on Knoema platform

Did you actually know that Knoema let you not only use existing applications, but develop your own custom data-driven apps without even having special developer skills? It may sound incredibly to many of you, but that's true.

We made our apps available in a separate section on Knoema home page. All these apps are pretty easy to use and provide the access to valuable information just in couple of clicks.

And just to give you a clear vision what kinds of app you can develop using platform features we prepared a short review of our best ones.

The Global Information & Communication Technology Navigator

ICTN is an online analytical tool with the most detailed IT and Communication spending data ever assembled.

The dataset includes 13 years of history and 5 years of forecast data across 75 countries and 90 industries.

You can use this tool free of charge, though if you need more current data, longer history, forecasts, or more detailed spending categories, you can contact us using sign up button and we'll provide you with the pricing.

World Reserves of Fossil Fuels

BP's "Statistical Review of World Energy" published in mid 2013 says that the world has in reserves 861 billion tonnes of coal, 187 trillion cubic meters of natural gas, and 1669 billion barrels of crude oil.

These numbers seems to be huge at a glance, but taking into account today's level of extraction proved reserves of coal will be exhausted in 109 years. The last cubic meter of natural gas will be extracted in 2068. And by 2065 there will be no reserves of crude oil.

Data viz gadget upgrades

Data visualization has an amazing ability to make the complex simple. And as soon as we provide all users, both regular and professional, with the platform for data visualization, we believe the data viz gadget itself shouldn't be complicated but highly visual, simple and easy-to-use. 

So today we invite you to have a look at our redesigned chart appearance tab and try to use it in your data viz practice.

1. Reducing the number of dropdown menus

As you might see at first sight we replaced almost all the dropdown menus with the icons. Now you can easily select the required background type, chart type, legends, markers and gridlines by selecting an icon. And as soon as you put cursor over the icon, you'll see a tooltip defining what kind of option it exactly is.

World International Reserves: leaders and outsiders

International reserves are financial resources, usually in the form of funds, that are held in reserve and can be passed between the central banks of different countries with relative ease. Typically, international reserves are in the form of a specific currency, but may also take the form of some type of precious metal such as gold.

As for 2012 China has closed up to 30% of World International Reserves and has continued to head the list like for the past 6 years. In 2007 China surpassed Japan that had been leading since 1993.

Academic Ranking of World Universities

Since 2003 until now Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) considers about 1000 universities all over the world in order to build ranking of 500 ones with the highest performance in academic and research fields. 

Its methodology implies assessing institutions by 6 indicators including alumni (Score on Alumni) and staff (Score on Award) winning Nobel Prizes and Fields Medals, highly cited researchers (Score on HiCi), papers published in Nature and Science (Score on N&S), papers indexed in major citation indices (Score on PUB), and the per capita academic performance of an institution (Score on PCP).

Displaying hierarchy in a table

If you need a table as a data viz tool we would like you to know about an option that Knoema offers to you. It's displaying hierarchy. Though it's important to mention that it's available only if a primary dataset has the hierarchy in it.

Please take a look at our case study to get a hint how you can use this option on your own. We created two visualizations with the same data to represent how displaying hierarchy can change the perception of a table.

Whats Up With the Sun Pulse?

Solar activity can be easily monitored by the number of sun spots. Regular recordings of the phenomenon have been available since the middle of the 18th century, with the star’s activity reaching peaks about every 11 years. The current Solar Cycle 24, is about to pass its prime in a matter of months, according to observations.

Matthew Penn of the National Solar Observatory says the strength of magnetic field in sunspots in waning, and the sunspot cycle may disappear altogether. “If this trend continues, there will be almost no spots in Cycle 25, and we might be going into another Maunder Minimum,” he said.

International Property Rights Index

After Mohamed Bouazizi, Tunisian street vendor, committed self immolation because police expropriated his merchant property worthed $225 and, at the same time, his dreams that was above the price, property rights issue has become keenly discussed question throughout the world. The Arab Spring, the movement that emerged right after this incident, made it clear that freedom and secure property rights are inseparably connected with each other.

In order to make it possible to defend both physical and intellectual property rights, the Property Rights Alliance developed an instrument allowing comparison between the nations by relative strengths of property rights they provide for their citizens. This instrument, the International Property Rights Index, is published since 2007 helping policymakers to make better decisions.

Various charts enhancements

Providing all users with the place for data visualization and visual storytelling, we are always in a constant process of upgrading our data viz tools.

And now you are about to know what chart enhancements we have recently implemented.

1. Today you can change your background type picking up out of 3 options: transparent (set by default), solid fill or gradient. You can change background color as well using around 100 available colors.

Democracy from Central Europe to Eurasia

Today we present the results of democracy development survey conducted in 29 countries of Central Europe and Eurasia by "Freedom House", the organization established in 1941 in the United States and aimed at the expansion of democracy across the world, as it is the best way to fight against totalitarian ideologies which still continue to prevail in several states.

The ratings presented are based on the scale of 1 to 7, with 1 representing the highest level of democratic progress and 7 the lowest. The 2013 ratings reflect the period January 1 through December 31, 2012. 

Treemap for space-filling visualization of hierarchies

Have you ever faced the situation, when none of the data visualization tools represented in Knoema was exactly appropriate to display hierarchical data in the way you needed? We thought that over and added treemap gadget.

Treemap gives the opportunity to see patterns that would be difficult to display in other ways and let users constrain available space efficiently so numerous indicators appear on the screen intelligibly at the same time.

Space Launch History

From time to time we hear messages about space vehicles launches and sometimes about unsuccessful attempts. The former and especially the latter ones are widely broadcasted through the TV and the Internet, being an exciting show for the viewers. We present not less exciting statistics on space launches on the underlying charts and tables.

As you can see from the first chart, total number of space launches decreased slightly in 2012 compared to 2011 breaking general upward tendency which has been lasting during last 9 years. The same picture is for the successful attempts: their share in total number of launches in 2012 keep on falling since 2010. However, 2013 seems more positive in this aspect: if tendency remains unchanged through the rest of the year, 2013 will be able to become the most successful year of the last decade.

Quality of Human Capital

Quality of human capital is a key contributor to increase of productivity and economic growth.

Out of 40 countries covered by WIOD database, South Korea has the largest share of high-skilled personnel in labor force (almost 50%). The share of high-skilled labor in other BRICS countries is much lower - 16% Brazil, 14%-Russia, 7%-India, 6.5%-China. Despite relatively low share of high-skilled workers, China has already outpaced United States in terms of total number of high-qualified personnel (50.4 vs 50.2 million people in 2009).

Give your fingers a rest, autocomplete is added to search

Knoema is getting more and more user friendly. As soon as we have massive data level and it increases day by day, we are working on improving our intelligent search. And today you can find data you are looking for even faster and easier with the help of search autocomplete.

Tax Rates Across the World

The charts and the map below describe tendencies in taxation practices across the world throughout the last  decade.

Perhaps the most crucial international trend is mounting importance of indirect taxes while corporate income tax rates are reduced in average.

The first statement is consistent with the govennments' need for increasing revenues meanwhile the second one is explained by the governments' intentions to attract investments. Moving towards indirect taxes means for the companies to encounter additional costs of achieving compliance with the tax law and of maintaining reputational risks at the moderate levels.

Import data from Google Drive to Knoema

There is no need now to be with your PC to be able to upload data to Knoema. We've added a new feature which allows you to import files straight from Google Drive. It is as easy and fast as nothing else.

Accepting the app
Click Upload data on a main page and then select Import from Google Drive.

The fastest way to explore finance of Fortune 500 companies

Fortune 500 app powered by Knoema now opens the world of the largest America's companies for you. You won't spend much time searching and learning data - now all the key financial indicators of Fortune 500 companies are available in a few clicks.

Topics come to Data Atlas

More than 20 topics and 1000 indicators – that’s how World Data Atlas looks today. A year ago when we launched this feature the total amount of indicators was just about 40. Now take a look at the results and test the feature by yourself.

For comfortable World Data Atlas use we changed the navigation by taking the topics out to the navigation bar of a main Atlas page as well as on each country’s page.

How it works
Everything is pretty simple. If you are interested in the cross-country statistics, pick up the needed topic from the navigation bar on the main Atlas page and then select an indicator.

When Google provides information on user data requests?

Google reports that in the second half of 2012 company got 21 389 user data requests from federal agencies and governments from all over the world. Almost 40% of all requests comes from the U.S. authorities. In case of the U.S. authorities, Google provides some information for 80-90% of user data requests.
Singapore, Taiwan and United Kingdom get some information from Google in 70-75% of requests. Russia, Turkey, Irland and Hungary have very low chances to obtain requested information from Google.

Top 200 World Universities

The most notable changes that occured during the last studyig year (2012-2013) are Harvard University's fall from second to fourth place and the University of Oxford's move into second. Meanwhile, the California Institute of Technology has consolidated as the world number one keeping leading position for the second year at a run.
One more remarkable tendency over the 2012-2013 years is the rise of Asian universities. So, institutions of China, Republic of Korea, Taiwan, Singapore have made their best, moving on the top positions.

Alcohol consumption and personal welfare

The analysis of alcohol consumption and personal welfare (GDP and GNI per capita and labor productivity) statistics show that there is no negative correlation between these two indicators.

As it can be seen from the graphs below, interdependence between expenditures on alcoholic beverages and personal welfare indicators can be well descripted with normal function.

So, very little as well as very big amounts of alcohol consumed is bad for personal welfare, while moderate alcohol consumption contributes in favor of personal welfare.

Cinematography across the world

Explore how cinematography industry is developing in different countries across the world.

Here are some facts that may interest you. There are more than 6000 indoor cinemas in USA where as total number of screens is a little bit less that 40.000. Iceland has the best attendance frequency per capita in the world which is 5.8.

There are several different indicators to explore. You can switch between them and choose the most interesting for you.

Margaret Thatcher's governance in figures

Looking on Margaret Thatcher's achievements it seems that the most important and noticeable are reduction of inflation and holding it on low levels and decreasing of unemployment levels.

This seems even more impressive since economic theory predicts negative correlation between inflation and unemployment (Phillips Curve). Other social-economic indicators also argue in favour of Margaret Thatcher's wise governance.