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Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 10, 847-856, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-10-847-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
 
27 Apr 2018
Continuous national gross domestic product (GDP) time series for 195 countries: past observations (1850–2005) harmonized with future projections according to the Shared Socio-economic Pathways (2006–2100)
Tobias Geiger Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Telegraphenberg A 56, 14473 Potsdam, Germany
Abstract. Gross domestic product (GDP) represents a widely used metric to compare economic development across time and space. GDP estimates have been routinely assembled only since the beginning of the second half of the 20th century, making comparisons with prior periods cumbersome or even impossible. In recent years various efforts have been put forward to re-estimate national GDP for specific years in the past centuries and even millennia, providing new insights into past economic development on a snapshot basis. In order to make this wealth of data utilizable across research disciplines, we here present a first continuous and consistent data set of GDP time series for 195 countries from 1850 to 2009, based mainly on data from the Maddison Project and other population and GDP sources. The GDP data are consistent with Penn World Tables v8.1 and future GDP projections from the Shared Socio-economic Pathways (SSPs), and are freely available at http://doi.org/10.5880/pik.2018.010 (Geiger and Frieler, 2018). To ease usability, we additionally provide GDP per capita data and further supplementary and data description files in the online archive. We utilize various methods to handle missing data and discuss the advantages and limitations of our methodology. Despite known shortcomings this data set provides valuable input, e.g., for climate impact research, in order to consistently analyze economic impacts from pre-industrial times to the future.
Citation: Geiger, T.: Continuous national gross domestic product (GDP) time series for 195 countries: past observations (1850–2005) harmonized with future projections according to the Shared Socio-economic Pathways (2006–2100), Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 10, 847-856, https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-10-847-2018, 2018.
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Short summary
National economic development is usually measured as gross domestic product (GDP), a quantity that has only been regularly available since 1960. However, many users of economic data require longer time series that are easily accessible and ready-to-use, also by non-experts. This current paper unites various sources of sparsely available GDP estimates from earlier time periods to provide continuous and complete coverage of national GDP for 195 countries from 1850 to the present.
National economic development is usually measured as gross domestic product (GDP), a quantity...
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