WhoGov Dataset

The largest available dataset on members of government across time and countries

The WhoGov dataset is described in our article here: Nyrup, Jacob and Stuart Bramwell. 2020. Who Governs? A New Global Dataset on Members of Cabinets, American Political Science Review, 114(4), 1366-1374. WhoGov won the 2021 Lijphart/Przeworski/Verba award for best dataset in comparative politics.

The dataset enables researchers to take a new approach to studying governing elites in autocracies and democracies. We provide bibliographic information, such as gender and party affiliation, on cabinet members in July every year in the period 1966-2016 in all countries with a population of more than 400,000 citizens. In total, the dataset contains data on 50,197 cabinet members in 177 countries, adding up to 8,057 country-years.

WhoGov makes it possible to answer questions such as; what is the share of female cabinet members globally, which type of regime has the highest cabinet turnover, and have cabinets increased in size over time? And many others. The dataset is highly flexible and can be used to calculate countless variables of interest, including the number of female ministers, ministerial experience, cabinet turnover and cabinet size at the country-year level.

The team is continuously working on updating the data with more years and more variables. We are hoping to publish an updated dataset covering up to 2021 in the spring of 2022. For enquiries or if you identify any errors, contact: whogov@nuffield.ox.ac.uk.