International Macrosocial Indicators as Analytical Tools in Sociology

Keywords: open data, secondary data, Big Data, index, international project


The article considers a number of projects initiated by international institutions, which are a source of a system of indicators for the comparative study of societies at the global level, as well as expand the range of methodological and analytical tools in sociology. In particular, World Giving Index from Gallup and Charities Aid Formation, and Wellcome Global Monitor from Gallup and Wellcome Trust, both Global Corruption Barometer and Corruption Perception Index from Transparency International, two economic indicators – Economic Freedom of the World, and Index of Economic Freedom – from The Cato Institute, Fraser institute, and The Heritage Foundation respectively, Human Development Index and Gender Social Norms Index from The United Nation, Global Peace Index and Global Terrorism Index from Institute for Economics & Peace, Vision of Humanity are considered.

The authors identify the following limitations in the use of data from international comparative projects - comparability, interpretation and ranking. The limitations are caused by socio-cultural differences of countries, the lack of a single system for recording statistics in all countries, the different number of countries participating in projects, the variability of primary data sources for the calculation of indices. The specific political situation in the state should be attached to these reasons. The analysis of macro-social indicators at the country level needs to consider data for all years of the participation of country in the project and mandatory appeal to the semantic content index and its components.

The value of this study is also in the accumulation of electronic links to international projects within a single source, which simplifies the search for the necessary information. However, the number and thematic variability of international macro-social indicators are much greater, so the prospects of this study are to expand their number, and detailed analysis of individual institutions and / or projects that design them, and thematic research using macro-social indicators.


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