In this toolkit, we provide you with 50 of the most useful and trusted sources available to conduct your research.
This list is not exhaustive, so we encourage you to build on it by adding your own favourite sources in your bookmarks. You are also free to share your preferred websites by sending us an email.
Note that only open sources are accepted. If you'd like to learn more about what makes a good source, check out our article What makes a good source.
Enjoy this toolkit!
The Top 5 sources used by analysts
1. Forbes: business-focused media, with some interesting pieces on economic issues, innovation, and corporate social responsibility. It also features country and region-specific websites.
2. The Guardian features various investigative articles on topics like plastic pollution, human rights, or climate change.
3. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency): a very complete portal with statistics about energy, water, CO2 and many other key environmental topics. Also features a Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator, widely used by certified users.
4. Reuters: a global provider of unique news stories where one can find the primary source of information relayed by other newspapers.
5. National Geographic: "world leader in geographic, cartography and exploration". Features many short and in-depth articles about environmental and climate issues.
Where to go for general information
- Our World in Data: one of the most extensive databases about all global issues.
- World Bank: a wide and reliable portal for data on poverty, inequality, energy, food security, or climate change.
- OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development): advanced reports mostly on economic and social topics such as youth unemployment, gender equality, well-being.
- ScienceDirect: features over 1.2 million peer-reviewed articles in open access on themes like Life, Health or Social Sciences. Your best ally when looking for robust facts.
- ResearchGate: a social networking platform for scientists and researchers that contains various open access articles. Very helpful for technical topics.
- Nature: a renowned scientific journal with a large variety of peer-reviewed articles mainly on science, technology and natural sciences.
Reports on macro trends
- WEF (World Economic Forum): a handy platform with short articles on societal and economic trends. Its condensed articles often mention primary sources, which you should check too (more on primary vs secondary sources here)
- McKinsey: the global consulting firm McKinsey produces high-quality reports on diversity, social responsibility and sustainability in the corporate world.
- Macrotrends: a portal for detailed graphs and figures on global, national and company-level statistics. A very useful source to sketch your introduction.
- BBC: “the world’s leading public service broadcaster” and a reliable source for wide-ranging topics.
- The Guardian: features various investigative articles on topics like plastic pollution, human rights or climate change.
- The Conversation: an independent, high-quality source of news that combines journalism with academic rigor.
- Bloomberg: a very complete portal for business statistics and company-focused articles.
- Forbes: business-focused media, with some interesting pieces on economic issues, innovation, and corporate social responsibility. It also features country and region-specific websites.
- New York Times: high-quality articles, with several pieces on social and climate justice. You should make sure to check primary sources, as articles sometimes feature strong opinions.
- BusinessInsider: a credible source of insights on business and financial news. Contains sections on innovation and corporate responsibility that can be used for your work.
- Fortune: a business magazine renowned for its ranking of companies by revenue. They regularly publish interesting pieces on companies' initiatives in energy and environment, CSR, etc.
- Reuters: a global provider of unique news stories where one can find the primary source of information relayed by other newspapers.
Where to go for information specific to a topic
Climate change data
- NASA (North American Space Agency)
- IPCC (The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change)
- EEA (European Environmental Agency)
- IEA (International Energy Agency)
Resource and waste
Health and Well-being
- WHO (World Health Organization): the go-to place for data about all health topics (e.g. mental disorders, infectious diseases, road accidents, etc.).
- World Bank - Good health and well-being: a section dedicated to SDG 3, with graphs and figures to master this topic.
- Our World in Data - Global Health: a robust and well-organized overview of health outcomes, with detailed sub-sections on all relevant topics.
Workers rights & gender equality
- ILO (International Labor Organization): a trusted source of data if you focus on safety in the workplace, child labor, forced labor, green jobs or youth employment.
- Equileap: "The leading provider of gender equality data & insights", a must-check source for analyses on SDG 5.
- Catalyst: a global nonprofit leading research and concrete solutions to help "build workspaces that work for women".
- Human Rights Watch: includes very detailed reports and investigations on human rights abuses across the world.
- Corporate Benchmark: one of the best benchmarks for companies’ status regarding human rights.
- Amnesty International: a global movement and a valuable source of reports about human rights and injustice worldwide.
Wildlife and Biodiversity
- WWF (World Wildlife): "the leading organization in wildlife conservation and endangered species", which offers various reports and insights on Climate Change, Life on Land and Life below Water.
- National Geographic: "world leader in geographic, cartography and exploration". Features many short and in-depth articles about environmental and climate issues.
- Nature Conservancy: a "global environmental nonprofit working to create a world where people and nature can thrive" which offers great insights on biodiversity efforts.
- ClientEarth: an environmental organisation focused on "bringing about systemic change that protects the earth for – and with – its inhabitants".
- RAN (Rainforest Action Network): a global nonprofit focused on preserving forests, which involves producing insightful reports on climate change and human rights.
- Greenpeace: environmental NGO which gives access to various reports on climate change, environmental protection, both in terms of issues and solutions.
- Chain Reaction Research: a think tank which conducts sustainability risk analysis on the topics of deforestation and commodities.
Inequality and social justice
- Amnesty International: a global movement fighting inequality and poverty. Its website contains a lot of key reports and short pieces on these issues.
- OECD - Inequality: charts and tables focused on different dimensions of inequality (income, gender, housing, etc.)
- BankTrack: an international organisation focused on tracking banks and their investments.
- Facing Finance: a small NGO producing quality reports on financial institutions that profit form human rights and environmental violations, controversial weapons financing and corruption.
- Reclaim Finance: an organisation that researches and exposes financial institutions that support the fossil fuel industry.