Why do we produce geoBoundaries?

Transparency & Research Replication

While many countries provide public domain information on where their boundaries are, a majority do not provide an authoritative, open digital source. We strongly believe that every global citizen should have access to information about the legal political boundaries they live within, without having to pay for the access.

Precision & Consistency Matter

Small shifts in legal boundaries can drive huge changes, but are rarely tracked or recognized. We collate or create the highest geographic precision open data possible to promote precise results, and keep all of our previous versions available online. geoBoundaries has been around since 2017, providing annual updates each year.

Ease of Use

Every one of our boundaries is available as a Shapefile and geoJSON, with globally unique identifiers and consistent attributes. We provide both manual download and API access to support most users preferred mode of access.

Peer Review & Community Contributions

Anyone can participate in conversations about - or contribute to - geoBoundaries by visiting our public repository. You can also learn more about the procedures used to build geoBoundaries by reading our peer reviewed (PLoS One) publication.

Download geoBoundaries

Acknowledgement is required for use of these products. Users should be aware of the following usage notes:

  • We seek to represent countries as they would represent themselves in the case of conflicted boundaries. This can result in overlaps between countries. If you need a single, seamless global boundary, please consider our CGAZ dataset.
  • Each boundary is the most recent, most accurate open license product we could create or retrieve from sources with clearly defined licenses.
  • In addition to the open geoBoundaries data, we also offer UN OCHA CODs (Humanitarian) and UN SALB (Authoritative) data, where available, standardized to an identical schema.
  • The data available on this website are the most recent available. If you require a versioned release (i.e., for research replication), please visit our historic releases page, or use one of our versioned APIs.