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Who shares data on the green economy? Part Two

With the climate change issue front and centre of most people’s minds this month, Insightflow continues to build free-to-access libraries of Green Economy and D&I data, which can be accessed simply by registering (for free) on our main website. Click here to join us and access the data.

Insightflow is passionate about collaboration and information sharing. That’s why we have collated another group of open source platforms which share data on the green economy and sustainable development. Our last article looked at some of the big names (scroll down to read our previous piece), and here, we’ve rounded up a few more which we think will be of interest to researchers.

European Environment Agency

The EEA has a very large library of data sets for green economy and environment researchers, and updates regularly with the latest publications from EU member states. Data sets include land management, as well as satellite imagery tools that allow researchers to study changes to land use on a daily and annual basis. Topics covered include agriculture, climate change adaptation and mitigation, resource efficiency and sustainability, and can be filtered by region. There is an incredible amount of data available and it should certainly be on the bookmark list of any researcher in the field.

Data Europa EU

‘1,093,779 datasets found’. That gives you an idea of the scale of data available at Data Europa. Usefully, it combines European, national and international data sets, which users can search through, and the search process is relatively intuitive. The site holds data in a number of languages, although specific country searches by sector make finding specific data relatively simple. The site contains a host of data from EU member states on subjects such as ammonia emissions and energy usage. 

Green Growth Knowledge

While part of the Green Policy Platform, which we touched upon in our last article, there is significant depth to this particular section. The tools and metrics on offer make it a very useful resource for anyone interested in the green economy. As well as water impact and solutions tools, there are links to third party data sets from places like the Climate Policy Initiative and NGOs. Searchable by sector and country, there is a lot to explore here and it’s well worth bookmarking.


The statistics website of Eurostat is an excellent resource for researchers interested in European data on a wide variety of topics, including the environment, trade, energy and agriculture. The data is easily accessible and features databases, tables and published reports for secondary research purposes.

UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs

Another highly useful resource for anyone interested in sustainable development. While reports dominate the website, within those are data sets and tables which will be of interest to researchers. From sustainable development of enterprises at a micro scale to sustainable transport solutions, there is a lot of information for any researchers looking for secondary research and completed reports in their chosen sectors.

Insightflow will continue to publish these brief guides to useful research resources in the green economy and sustainability sector as and when we can. If you are interested in the latest data, then please visit our website and access our Green Economy library by clicking here

Part One

As consumers, corporations and investors begin to accept and address the challenges posed by climate change, impact investment is becoming increasingly important and viable. However, stumbling blocks still remain for many people hoping to make a positive difference with their investments, not least of which is greenwashing of ESG policies and associated offerings.

While governments and financial institutions are looking at new standards to combat this, there is still a significant knowledge gap in play in the impact investment sector. 

Research efforts need to bridge three key gaps in the path forward for impact investing: the Perception Gap, the Knowledge/Expertise gap, and the Action Gap. — Abigail Noble World Economic Forum, via Impact Assets Issue Brief #14.

Insightflow has created two free, open information and data libraries which we keep updated for use by researchers interested in D&I and green economy issues (please click here to access them), but sourcing knowledge can still present a challenge.

So, just where can you find reliable data on the green economy? We believe these links may help in the initial stages of research:


The open source Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) website has a good section on green growth and sustainability, with plenty of detailed reports on their own work in the sector as well as more detailed studies on green policy decisions and resources. For anyone beginning research in the sector, it should be a bookmark. There is more than enough data for anyone in research to get their teeth into; from detailed tables on green growth indicators to the latest expert papers, it’s a trove.

Green Growth Knowledge Platform:

A useful source of secondary research, with completed insights from experts in their fields, as well as links to further research and resources, which are broken down into themes, allowing easy exploration. Their knowledge hub has tools, resources and guidance on items as wide ranging as water resources, chemicals and microplastics. The GGKP has three distinct platforms; Green Policy, Green Industry and Green Finance, which provide distinct insights into each sector. The platforms work with a significant number of knowledge partners from around the world, which means there is a considerable breadth of knowledge available to researchers. 

UN Environment Programme:

UNEP has been operating since 1972, although arguably it has never been more necessary, and it offers a significant amount of information on-site. Around 15,000 items can be found on the platform, ranging from research insights to tools, across multiple sectors. The World Environment Situation Room is a comprehensive resource which should be of interest to researchers. 

Green Economy Coalition:

A coalition of NGOs, trade unions, UN agencies and citizens’ groups, the Green Economy Coalition has a very useful library and resource section where they host the latest in-house articles and studies on sustainability and the transition to green economies around the world. From articles to case studies on individual countries and their efforts to transition, it’s a very useful resource for anyone researching the sector.


CDP is a non-profit charity that, “runs the global disclosure system for investors, companies, cities, states and regions to manage their environmental impacts”. The website will be of particular interest to impact investment researchers, with a large section given over to impact investment opportunities, as well as a data and insights section which covers everything from emissions to mitigation actions. 

The above resources represent some of the better places online to locate secondary research for impact investment. However, it remains true that finding information and data can be a problem. While we hope this short article helps those new to the sector, we would also urge researchers and interested parties to sign up for free to Insightflow and make use of our own Green Economy data and information library to keep up to date with the latest green economy and green tech news and knowledge.

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