Western Libraries

Country Profiles

Country profiles assist in finding information about a specific country or region. Historical, political, economic, cultural and other information can be found here.

Background Sources

When conducting research, start with encyclopedias and dictionaries to find background information or an overview of a topic. Encyclopedia articles and dictionary entries often lead to key books on a topic. The resources listed here provide you with valuable country specific information, however, as with any resource be sure to evaluate the resource in terms of accuracy, authority, objectivity, currency and coverage to ensure it is the best resource for your particular topic.

Oxford Reference Online Premium 
This database features online dictionary, language reference, and subject reference works published by Oxford University Press. This resource will help you identify trends, people, places, important dates etc., on many countries and regions. (Online resource)

Regional Surveys of the World
This set of reference books provides a detailed break down of the statistical, political, and historical situation of countries around the world. The set is divided into 11 volumes, each addressing a specific geographic region. The information contained in these refrence books is also available through the database Europa World Plus. (Print and Online resources)

Europa Political & Economic Dictionaries Series
A series of definitive guides to the economics and politics of the major regions of the world, this title provides clear definitions detailing terms, concepts, names and organizations used in relation to current economic or political affairs in the region. Cross-referenced up-to-date entries define, explain and supply relevant background information on countries, regions, ethnic groups, political parties, international organizations, business, policies and disputes. (Print resource)

Regional Political Handbooks of the World
This series provides thorough and accurate information on every major aspect of government and politics in various regions around the world. Each regional book includes extensive country-by-country national political profiles for each country, plus in-depth coverage of intergovernmental organisations operating on the continent. (Print resource)

Facts on File Library of World History
This set of reference books provides information about various places, peoples, events and eras throughout world history. There are several volumes dedicated to specific countries including: France, Great Britain, Italy, Russia and Germany. Each book contains easy-to-use reference features, such as an A-to-Z dictionary of people, events, and terms, as well as a chronology of significant events. In addition, a short narrative history presents students with the essential facts of the country's history. (Print resource)

Encyclopedia of Contemporary Culture Series
This set of encyclopedias offer an exploration of a range of diverse and fascinating cultural subjects pertinent to specific countries around the world. These countries include: America, Britain, China, France, Germany, Italy Japan, Latin America and the Caribbean, Russia and Spain. (Print resource)

Political Risk Yearbook 
For over 100 countries information is provided in a standard format that allows one to assess the risks of doing business in the countries profiled. The profiles are very detailed. They cover history and geography of the country, social conditions and international relationships. The database also provides 18 month and 5-year forecasts.

Country Report - Economist Intelligence Unit: EIU 
This source offers nearly 200 Country Reports, covering the political scene and economic policy issues. Articles, about 40-50 pages in length, are updated 4 times a year. Additionally, 6-8 page supplements are provided monthly. Narrated guide from the Business Library and/or view a powerpoint demonstration of search features and enhancements.

Country Profile - Economist Intelligence Unit: EIU 
Country Profiles offers information on 200 countries - providing an annual perspective on the long-term political and social issues that affect the countries. The annual reports are availabe in PDF format, with an archive of earlier reports.

AsiaSource
Searchable by date and keyword. Independent web sites are sources of information. Information and assistance regarding the cultural, economic, social, historical and political dimensions of Asia. Includes a daily digest of Asia-related news reported in the international press; the Web's largest Asia bookstore, thousands of annotated links; country profiles which include maps and statistical information; a database of specialists on Asia, a large searchable glossary; a guide to business protocol in 12 of Asia's major business markets and an up-to-date directory of government leaders and cabinet ministers and an international events calendar of events from the Asia Society and scores of other organizations.

Latin America Network
Portal to a large collection of resources related to Latin American countries.