BP Statistical Review of World Energy


For those needing high-level energy data from a credible source, a great free resource to consult is the BP Statistical Review of World Energy.  This annual publication is released every June and provides data across a variety of energy sectors (oil, natural gas and coal, to name a few) using various data points, including consumption, production and reserves. Oil is the world’s most valuable commodity and thus, the section on oil is the most comprehensive.  Current and historical statistics are available not only on consumption, production and reserves on a worldwide basis (broken further down by regions and countries) but also on spot prices, refinery capacities and imports/exports.   Similar, less extensive data exists for the other energy sectors highlighted in the annual report – natural gas, coal, nuclear energy, hydroelectricity, renewable energy and primary energy.  Data in the print version goes back to 2001; most data in the on-line version goes back to 1965 and is available in either PDF or Excel formats.

In addition to providing helpful statistics, the Review also gives an analysis of the overall energy market at that place in time.  For example, the 2012 report states that in 2011, all the net growth took place in emerging economies, with China alone accounting for 71% of global energy consumption growth.  The 2012 edition also notes that while global energy consumption grew by 2.5% in 2011, it was well below the 5.1% growth seen in 2010.

The 2012 edition, with data as of December 31, 2011, is now available on the BP website. The print version of the 2012 BP Statistical Review of World Energy is also available free of charge; contact their Investor Relations office for additional information.

David Brackus is a Business Researcher with Jefferies & Company, Inc. in Houston, where he supports the firm’s Energy Practice.  He is a 2003 graduate of The University of Texas School of Information and is the 2012 Chair of the SLA Division of Petroleum and Energy Resources.

The CDC Under Magnification: Part Two


Wouldn’t you know, watching the very smart movie Contagion last night would get me psyched to write this second installment on the CDC?  This part deals with the National Center for Health Statistics, a CDC subset that works to, “compile statistical information to guide actions and policies to improve the health of our people. …Working with partners throughout the health community, we use a variety of approaches to efficiently obtain information from the sources most able to provide information” (About). For someone trying to do business research through the NCHS website for the first time, be forewarned that these pages, understandably dense with information, have a nearly overwhelming barrage of links, terminology, and acronyms-that-all-sound-the-same.  My advice is to acclimate to the site’s organization by starting at the beginning:  use the left-side navigation menu to peruse the NCHS’s various Surveys and Data Collection Systems’s sub-pages on an individual basis to see which one might offer information that’s relevant to your research.  If a particular survey sounds promising, then also stick to that left-menu’s Survey Results & Products link, or any comparable link, when they're available.

In this manner, I managed to drill down to a site that breaks the National Hospital Discharge Survey, one of the  more exhaustive surveys, into spreadsheets of information based on popular aggregating factors.  (Alas, I don't know if this url and my last link are persistent).  For example, I downloaded a chart that gives me totals for “all listed procedures” from hospitals by category and age, meaning I see things like the number of appendectomies performed in the 15-44 age group.  This type of information is great for those trying to compile a numerical justification for their newfangled product or pill.

The CDC Under Magnification: Part One

Money Culture

We’re lucky to live in a country where our government collects and disseminate scads of information for free, case in point, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  Of course nothing is easy with our government, and the CDC website is no exception, mostly due to its sheer scale.  So, having nothing better to do, being kind and selfless, I decided to spend some quality time frolicking through the realm in order to point out a couple highlights that are relevant to business researchers. First and foremost, the Features -> Data & Statistics Page lends itself particularly well to background and/or market validation types of research.  It has been going strong since 2007, and it covers a surprisingly wide array of topics concerning our health.  Interested in opening up a recovery center?  Check out the 2011 Painkiller Overdoses report.  Selling hearing aids?  Read the 2010 or 2011 Infant Hearing Loss report.   Manufacturing air conditioners?  See the 2009 Working in Hot Environments report.

These reports are presented in a format akin to the brief executive summary, with a sprinkling of impactful charts scattered among a handful of paragraphs (including citations).  The bottom of the reports will also feature a series of links to related resources that might, depending on the institution, freely provide their own information too.

University Presidents' Salaries


When we think of the phrase executive compensation, the first thing that probably comes to mind is all things banking and corporate.  Hence it's englightening to see the data compendium that one of the major trade-pubs for our nonprofit industry, The Chronicle of Higher Education, created when they trained a spotlight on the biggest fish in their university ponds- the presidents. We give them kudos for the sheer volume of research work.  They found out how much these .edu CEOs make, plus how that salary compares to the average professor's compensation for that institution, plus what percentage that salary is of the total institutional budget, plus they repeated the process 519 times.

To see The Chronicle's impressive interactive infographic (try saying that five times fast) then follow this link to the chart, which also features a series of tabs that break universities down by category.

If you want to know whether the bigwig of your alma matter is in the 99% or 1% as it were, then we recommend purchasing a subscription to the Chronicle.  To whet your appetite, here's a peek at the tip-top of that compensation list.  (Tip:  They culled this salary data from the Guidestar website, which we have also blogged about before here.)



At bizologie we’re actually big animal lovers, so please don’t take this post’s image too literally. is not the oceanic equivalent of bug spray but rather, according to its parent company FactSet, a “corporate governance database,” which, “provides takeover defense and corporate governance data for more than 5,600 U.S. incorporated public companies.” To use’s services to the fullest extent, a company would need to purchase an account.  Luckily for us intellectual freeloaders though, they provide near the top of their homepage a nondescript link to their reports archive that dates back 10 years.  It’s full of short yet detailed- including spreadsheets and graphs- reports concerning all things poison pills, proxy fights, activist tactics, and hostile M&A’s.  For those who find corporate dramas riveting reading, or those with the potential to have a Conglomo breathe down their neck, it’s definitely worth dipping a metaphorical toe in the water and visiting the archive.

Kids Count


The Annie E. Casey Foundation just released their 22nd annual Kids Count Data Book and now have their data available online through the Kids Count Data Center. "Kids Count is a national and state-by-state effort to track the status of children in the U.S. The Foundation provides policymakers and citizens with benchmarks of child well-being and seeks to to enrich local, state, and national discussions concerning ways to secure better futures for all children." With the online tool users can compare individual states or look at indicators across states for comparison and rank and then download the data in charts and maps for presentations. The statistics cover all of what you would expect but you will also find unique factors represented for a complete overview of children's well-being. Research includes information on children's:

  • demographics with info on immigrant families
  • education including test scores
  • family structure
  • health with insurance, dental, even mental health stats
  • safety with stats on out of home placement

Megaregion Research


Megaregions are massive interconnected cities scattered throughout the United States, e.g. the Houston/Austin/Dallas Triangle, and the America 2050 initiative is putting them under the microscope (metaphorically speaking). Their about page says, “America 2050 is a national initiative to meet the infrastructure, economic development and environmental challenges of the nation as we prepare to add about 130 million additional Americans by the year 2050.”

If you’re doing business research- especially research concentrated around megaregions- then their site is a veritable goldmine of information.  America 2050 features free reports on topics ranging from energy & climate, high speed rail, broadband infrastructure, commuter patterns, etc.

Beyond the sheer concentration of data and analysis packed in America 2050's content, their maps are an excellent highlight.  The main maps page features many versions of the national-level megaregion concentrations, plus proposed passenger transit lines throughout the US.

Furthermore the incredibly detailed region-specific reports found in the Research tab have maps illustrating economic interrelationships among cities, e.g. wood products’ traffic concentrations within the Texas Triangle.

For those who want to keep abreast of the major economic, environmental, infrastructure and transportation trends that are shaping America’s most heavily populated and trafficked areas, this site is definitely one to bookmark.

NCES - Education Statistics


The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), analyzes and provides data on education. NCES is run by the U.S. Department of Education Institute of Education Sciences. There are more education stats here than you can imagine. You can find school district demographics, drop-out rates, early education, adult literacy, school locators, and even international education comparisons. There are published reports or you can create custom tables. Some examples of stats available:

  • Medium income for High School grads is $25,000 and for Bachelor's degree or higher it's $45,000
  • 1.5 million kids were home schooled in 2007
  • The most popular major is business with 335,000 degrees conferred
  • Educational systems that outperformed the US in 4th grade science were Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong SAR, Japan, and Singapore
  • 57% of children ages 3 to 5 and not yet enrolled in kindergarten were enrolled in a center-based program

NCES Custom Table

Make Your City Smarter With IBM's City Forward


IBM's City Forward just launched and it's a wonderful free resource for aggregating data about cities all over the world. Using data from publicly available resources (e.g. U.S. Census Bureau, Australia Bureau of Statistics, EuroStat, UK National Statistics, etc.), City Forward allows users to "gain insight into urban issues such as transportation, energy, health, education and the environment." Using the data provided, users create "explorations" showing patterns and correlations within that data. Starting from their explorations tab, users enter the city or cities they want to explore combined with subjects of interest like transportation or health and then choose how they'd like to see the data presented. There are several explorations already created and even a community page to discuss explorations or provide troubleshooting. Check out the video below to see City Forward in action.