Finding statistics can often be challenging.  Remember to also look for statistics in a particular discipline by going to the Subject Guide for that discipline, such as Business or Health and Medicine

Subject Guides

Statistics (numerical data) can help to stregthen an argument in a research paper, project or presentation. There are many sources of statistics and many are available online.

Here are some excellent sources to start with:

A Web search can be quite effective in finding statistics. Do searches like:

smoking teens statistics

Consider the source!

Not all sources for statistics are reliable.  Government agencies and educational institutions are reliable sources for this kind of infomation. You can limit your search to government and educational sites:

smoking teens statistics site:gov


smoking teens statistics site:edu

Statistical data is also produced by organizations (e.g. the American Lung Association). So you could also search for:

smoking teens statistics site:org

Beware! Many organizations are advocating a particular point of view. Take this into account when using statistics from these sites.

The sections below list many useful and reliable sources for statistics


Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) - Projections, highlighting statistics for San Francisco Bay Area cities and counties is published every other year; the most recent report is not available online. (Ref 317.946 As78). 

County and City Extra

Public Policy Institute of California - Statistical and demographic essays focusing on a variety of issues, such as aging and population, in its California Counts series.

Sourcebook of County Demographics. (Ref 317.3 So84a) Fairfax, VA: CACI Marketing, 2008.

Census Bureau - A wealth of statistical information from the U.S. government. Use Easy Stats for quick and easy access to selected statistics collected by the U.S. Census Bureau through the American Community Survey. - "The home of the U.S. Government's open data."  Browse topics, or do a quick search.

FedStats - Links to statistics from U.S. Government Agencies.

Google Public Data Explorer - Find a variety of publicly available international and national statistics. Includes education, health, business, demographics, sales, and more.


People and Households - Data by subject - Browse the sections of interest which include demographics, including statistics relating to diversity, household spending, age, etc. From the U.S. Census Bureau.

Population Reference Bureau - Not just census information, but topical as well, in such areas as environment, AIDS, education, gender, etc.

 Also available in print at (Ref 317.3 Un3a

United Nations

UNdata - Statistical portal producted by the UN Statistical division. Allows searching across UN divisions. Allows you to compare countries.

UNStats - website of the UN Statistical Division. Contains statistics and publications produced by the division.

Demographic Yearbook: Annuaire Demographique

Statistical Yearbook (United Nations)

Other sources

Detailed information about the contries and regions of the world. Look under Compare Statistical Data to compare countries.

Google Public Data Explorer - Find a variety of publicly available international and national statistics. Includes education, health, business, demographics, sales, and more.

International Database (U.S. Census) -  a free resource for demographic data on "countries and areas of the world with current populations of 5,000 or more." The data base is browsable by country or by region (Less Developed Countries, Oceania, Africa, etc.) with data back to 1950 and projections to 2050. 

OECD Statistics - From the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. Allows you to browse by topic or country.

Population Reference Bureau: Country Profiles - Arranged by country name. ..."provide[s] quick access to essential information on population, health, and the environment for over 200 countries."

Census Bureau - A wealth of statistical information from the U.S. government, including health related issues.

Center for Health Statistics, Office of Health Information and Research - Statistical reports on health for California.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

National Center for Health Statistics - Access to statistical tables on behavioral risk factors, infant and child health, vital statistics, and chronic diseases.

Bureau of Justice Statistics - Crime, criminal offenders, drugs, homicide, plus statistics on the justice system. 

Criminal Statistics - From the California Attorney General's office, some 5,000 statistical tables, 59 reports, 26 publications....from the Criminal Justice Statistics Center.

Sourcebook of Criminal Justice Statistics Online - Annual statistics include public attitudes, characteristics of the justice system, and profiles of offenses and persons arrested.

Uniform Crime Reports: Crime in the United States - Crime statistics from the FBI. Includes reports on terrorism, hate crimes, and uniform crime.