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Atlas of Economic Complexity

Ricardo Hausmann and the whole Harvard Growth Lab team
Harvard Growth Lab, 2013
Level: beginner
Perspective: Other
Topic: (De-)growth, Globalization & International Economic Relations, Innovation & Technology, North-South Relations & Development
Format: Website

"The Atlas of Economic Complexity is an award-winning data visualization tool that allows people to explore global trade flows across markets, track these dynamics over time and discover new growth opportunities for every country. Built at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, The Atlas is powered by Harvard’s Growth Lab’s research and is the flagship tool of The Viz Hub, the Growth Lab’s portfolio of visualization tools.

The Atlas places the industrial capabilities and know-how of a country at the heart of its growth prospects, where the diversity and complexity of existing capabilities heavily influence how growth happens. The tool combines trade data with synthesized insights from the Growth Lab’s research in a way that is accessible and interactive. As a dynamic resource, the tool is continually evolving with new data and features to help answer questions such as:

What does a country import and export? How has its trade evolved over time? What are the drivers of export growth? Which new industries are likely to emerge in a given geography? Which are likely to disappear? What are the GDP growth prospects of a given country in the next 5-10 years, based on its productive capabilities?

The original online Atlas was launched in 2013 as a companion tool to the book, The Atlas of Economic Complexity: Mapping paths to Prosperity. The Atlas is used worldwide by policymakers, investors, entrepreneurs, academics and the general public as an important resource for understanding a country’s economic structure." (Description copied from:

Comment from our editors:

The Atlas of Economic Complexity is a superb resource for self-learners who want to understand the structural features of economies. The easy-to-handle and intuitive  interface allows the resource to be used by people who do not have a specialized expertise in data analysis. Furthermore, the visualizations that can be produced with it, have great potential for teaching economics as well as related fields such as political economy or economic sociology, both to students/academic audiences and non-academic audiences/the general public. It is definitively worthwhile to check it out and invest some time in exploratory browsing!

Go to: Atlas of Economic Complexity

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