University of Gothenburg

Frequently Asked Questions

In this section, we answer some of the most frequent questions about QoG Data.

Our datasets are updated at different frequencies. The QoG Standard, Basic and OECD datasets are updated annually and released at the end of January. The European Quality of Government Index and the Expert Survey are updated approximately every three years. The other datasets might not be updated frequently or are stand-alone products. If you have a question about a specific dataset, please contact us at

All our datasets and associated tools are free to access and use; however, we strongly advise to be aware of citation requirements for each of them.

For the compilation datasets (Standard, Basic, OECD, Environmental Indicators and EU Regional datasets), please note that you must cite the original dataset providers as well as the QoG dataset. In our codebooks, we have suggestions on how to cite each dataset.

Commercial use of our products is forbidden. If you would like to use these products for commercial use, please get in contact with us at If you want to use variables from the compilation datasets, please read the license from the original data sources and get in touch with them directly, as they are the only owners of the data.

QoG data and associated tools are open for use. We have no payment or registration walls in place. Our hope is that our users can easily use our datasets and tools and that they cite properly each of the datasets used.

Yes, definitely. Please make sure always to cite both the original data sources and the QoG dataset if using the compilation datasets (Standard, Basic, OECD, Environmental Indicators and EU Regional datasets).

When using the other datasets, please cite according to the suggestion in each codebook.

The Standard dataset is a compilation of the variables we have found are insightful for research on the concept of Quality of Government. It is a big dataset with over 1900 variables. We created the Basic dataset as a selected collection of indicators that include the most used variables by students to make it easier to download and load with different programs (ex. Excel).

There are several ways you can look for variables of your interest or to browse what kind of content the datasets have. The first of them is our codebooks, which give you information about the variable and the datasets. You can also use the QoG Data Finder where you can look for the name of the variable or concepts related to them.

Some of our visualization tools have a download button where you can click and download the image for your personal use. You can also screenshot the graphs you create with the visualization tools.

If you use them for a report or presentation, make sure to always cite the original source of the variable and QoG Data.

Certain indicators change methodologies over time. This could mean that the indicator is no longer comparable when this change is introduced.

When this occurs, we report the indicator as two different variables, explaining which period they cover in their description in the codebooks and in the QoG Data Finder.

In 2022, to make the data-merging processes easier for our users, we replaced our country name (cname) and country_code (ccode) variables with the ISO-3166-1 standard country names and numeric codes. Whenever the numeric code or name does not exist in the ISO standard, we imputed the code and name used by the QoG standard, making sure it did not clash with previous codes. For example, the QoG name standard for France is France (-1962) and France (1963-). With adopting the ISO standard, the name is France for both entities.

The QoG country names and codes, as previously used, are renamed as cname_qog and ccode_qog respectively.

Most of our content is produced in English. Currently, QoG Data only produces codebooks in English.

You can look for the original data source of a variable of your interest looking at the codebooks or the QoG Data Finder. In both, you can find a link to the website of the original data source where you can contact them. We cannot provide direct contact.

We work continuously to make our visualization tools available for more people. We tend to choose colors that will provide a better contrast for people with color vision deficiency.

However, some variables may not plot properly if the values stretch over a big number of categories. Please let us know at if you find it difficult to access our visualization tools due to the color palettes we use, and we will try our best to make them more accessible.