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Q: How many people are in prison worldwide / per country ( Answered,   1 Comment )
Subject: How many people are in prison worldwide / per country
Category: Science > Social Sciences
Asked by: conni-ga
List Price: $5.00
Posted: 17 Apr 2005 16:27 PDT
Expires: 17 May 2005 16:27 PDT
Question ID: 510572
Do you know a statistic, how many people in all the world are in
prison, in which country and for what delict? Which organizations are
counting that? What has been the trend in the last years? Increase or
decrease and how many percent for what country?

Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 17 Apr 2005 17:04 PDT

I can link you to a site that provides a detailed comparison of the
number of people in prison in each country of the world, with (sadly)
the US at the top of the list.

The top 10 countries on the list are:

1  United States of America  2,085,620  

2  China  1,548,498  

3  Russian Federation  763,054  

4  Brazil  330,642  

5  India  313,635  

6  Ukraine  198,386  

7  Mexico  191,890  

8  South Africa  186,739  

9  Thailand  168,264  

10  Iran  133,658 

However, the other things you asked about -- trends in each country,
and the charges that people are in jail for -- go beyond what can be
provide in a $5 question, I'm afraid.

Let me know if this link to the site with the list would be suitable
as an answer to your question.


Clarification of Question by conni-ga on 18 Apr 2005 12:32 PDT
this would be suitable, if there are also other countries like latvia,
samoa and austria (i am writing about them)!
Subject: Re: How many people are in prison worldwide / per country
Answered By: pafalafa-ga on 18 Apr 2005 15:31 PDT
Hello conni-ga,

Thanks for getting back to me.

In order to retrieve the prison population data I mentioned earlier,
please do the following:

Head to this site:
International Centre for Prison Studies

and click on the link that says: "World Prison Brief".  This takes you
to another page of options:  Click on "Highest to Lowest Rates"

This will take you to a page with pull-down menus, where you can select:

--Entire World

--Prison population totals

And at last, you'll arrive at a table with the prison populations of
virtually all the countries in the world.

The three countries you mentioned are listed as follows:

91  Latvia  7,796  

177  Samoa (formerly Western Samoa)  281  

87  Austria  8,700  

You can click on each country's name for a good deal of more detailed
information.  For instance, clicking on Austria pulls up the:

"Prison Brief for Austria"

with a lot of information, including recent trends in prison populations:

Recent prison population trend
(year, prison population total, prison population rate)  

1992       6,913       (87)
1995       6,180       (77)
1998       6,962       (86)
2001       6,915       (85) 

I trust this information fully answers your question.  However, please
don't rate this answer until you have everything you need.  If you
would like any additional information, just post a Request for
Clarification to let me know how I can assist you further, and I'm at
your service.

All the best,


search strategy -- Used bookmarked site for prison statistics.
Subject: Re: How many people are in prison worldwide / per country
From: pinkfreud-ga on 17 Apr 2005 16:33 PDT
This paper may be of interest to you:

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