New Release of the Government Revenue Dataset Covers Past 40 years

UNU-WIDER has released an updated version of the Government Revenue Dataset with 40 years of tax and revenue data for 196 countries.

The UNU World Institute for Development Economics Research (UNU-WIDER) has released an updated version of the Government Revenue Dataset (GRD). The update includes the latest available tax and revenue data for 196 countries, providing a complete picture of government revenue and tax trends over time and allowing for analysis at the country, regional or cross-country level.

With the new update, the dataset covers the period from 1980–2019 (or –2020 where available), so for most countries there is four decades’ worth of observations available for analysis. The latest version of the database allows more flexibility for analysis by country income classification (low-income, lower-middle-income, upper-middle-income and high-income), as the historical World Bank Income Group classification has now been included in the Excel and Stata versions.

Considered to be the most complete source of cross-country revenue data available, the GRD is proving to be an invaluable tool for not only researchers, but also for policymakers, journalists and policy advisors worldwide. The dataset has been used extensively to address questions surrounding the impact of taxation on economic and social development, as well as for understanding the effects of economic shocks and policy changes on tax revenue collection.

Strengthening the capacity of developing countries to collect public revenues is key to sustaining investments in inclusive growth and in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

To accompany the new release, UNU-WIDER is also releasing two technical notes on data source selection and the composition of each variable in the dataset. A third technical note summarising country-specific information and guidance will be published later in 2021.

For more information on the GRD and related publications, visit the UNU-WIDER website.

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