Google Visualises the History of the Global Arms Trade from 1992 – 2010


Recently Google launched a project to map out the flow of small arms, light weapons and ammunition transfers around the world and went on to turn it into an interactive visualisation that lets users explore the history of the global arms trade between 1992 and 2010.

The project, developed by Google’s Creative Lab and the Brazil-based Igarape Institute used data provided by the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO), a Norwegian initiative focused on the dealing of small arms and allows users to search by country and view where imports and exports are coming from and going to each year. It also shows how much each country spends and receives as a result of the trade.

The data shows that some of the biggest exporters are Brazil with $151 million, Republic of Korea with $45 million, the Russian Federation with $92 million and Israel with $46 million. However, the Igarape Institute do state that the dataset used to create the tool is incomplete and many of the exports or imports may be censored or simply not monitored.

Google’s visualisation tool of the small arms trade can be viewed here.

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