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Global Statistics

Dr. Maksim Godovykh, University of Central Florida

Global statistics refer to numerical data and information that provide insights into various aspects on a global scale, including different countries, regions, or the entire world. Global statistics cover a wide range of topics, including demographics, economics, health, education, environment, and more. These statistics are an essential component in understanding the impacts of tourism as it helps researchers, policymakers, and destination management organizations understand global trends, patterns, and disparities, enabling them to make informed decisions and develop strategies at global, national, and local levels. There are several sources of secondary data on tourism, including government agencies, international organizations, industry associations, research firms, and academic institutions.

Government agencies are one of the main sources of secondary data on tourism. National and local governments collect and publish data on tourist arrivals and departures, tourism expenditures, and the number of hotel rooms and other types of accommodation available. These agencies also provide information on the tourism industry’s impact on the economy and the environment, making government data an essential resource for researchers studying tourism.

International organizations such as the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) also collect and publish tourism statistics on a global scale. These organizations provide valuable insights into the worldwide tourism industry, including data on international tourism receipts, tourist arrivals and departures, and tourism’s contribution to the global economy.

Industry associations such as the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) and the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) also gather and publish tourism statistics. These organizations provide data on industry trends and patterns, including information on the growth of the tourism industry and the economic impact of tourism in specific regions.

The Human Development Index (HDI) is another important source of secondary data that can be used to measure the quality of life on a national level. The HDI includes indicators such as life expectancy, education, and income. Additionally, the World Happiness Report, which represents data from the Gallop World Poll, provides information on the level of well-being and the positive and negative affect of residents in a destination.

Health is also an important aspect to consider in tourism impact research, and the World Health Organization (WHO) provides health indicators such as life expectancy at birth, which can be used to assess the health impacts of tourism. This data is widely used in medical, economic, and sociology research. Moreover, it is essential to consider the impacts of tourism on the environment. The data on environmental impacts such as carbon emissions and water consumption can be collected from various sources such as the International Energy Agency (IEA) and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP). Furthermore, DMOs’ strategic and marketing plans and regional statistics provide data on tourism statistics and economics.

Research firms also collect and analyze tourism data for their clients and publish reports on the industry. These firms use a variety of data sources, including government data, industry reports, and consumer surveys, to provide in-depth analysis of the tourism industry. Finally, researchers at universities and other academic institutions often conduct studies on tourism, collecting data that can be used to analyze trends and patterns in the industry. These studies provide insights into various aspects of the tourism industry, including consumer behavior, marketing strategies, and the impact of tourism on the environment.

These are the links for selected sources of secondary data:


Cervantes, P. A. M., Lopez, N. R., & Rambaud, S. C. (2020). Life expectancy at birth: A causal analysis of the health sector in Spain. In Decision making in social sciences: Between traditions and innovations (pp. 373-410). Springer, Cham.

Dwyer-Lindgren, L., Mackenbach, J. P., van Lenthe, F. J., & Mokdad, A. H. (2017). Self-reported general health, physical distress, mental distress, and activity limitation by US county, 1995-2012. Population Health Metrics15(1), 1-12.

Gallop World Poll (2023). Advanced Analytics. https://worldhappiness.report/

Howell, R. T., Kern, M. L., & Lyubomirsky, S. (2007). Health benefits: Meta-analytically determining the impact of well-being on objective health outcomes. Health Psychology Review1(1), pp. 83-136.

Lonely Planet (2021). Welcome to our 2022 Best in Travel list. https://www.lonelyplanet.com/articles/best-in-travel-2022

Mikayilov, J. I., Mukhtarov, S., Mammadov, J., & Azizov, M. (2019). Re-evaluating the environmental impacts of tourism: does EKC exist?. Environmental Science and Pollution Research26(19), 19389-19402.

OECD (2023). Tourism Statistics. https://www.oecd.org/cfe/tourism/tourism-statistics.htm

United Nations Development Program (2023). Human Development Reports. http://hdr.undp.org/en/content/human-development-index-hdi

UNWTO (2023). Tourism Statistics Data. https://www.unwto.org/tourism-statistics-data

World Bank (2023). World Bank Indicators. https://data.worldbank.org/indicator

World Health Organization (2023). The determinants of health. https://www.who.int/hia/evidence/doh/en/