Social policies and data

Social Expenditure Database (SOCX)


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Social Expenditure Database (SOCX)

The OECD Social Expenditure Database (SOCX) has been developed in order to serve a growing need for indicators of social policy. It includes reliable and internationally comparable statistics on public and (mandatory and voluntary) private social expenditure at programme level as well as net social spending indicators. SOCX provides a unique tool for monitoring trends in aggregate social expenditure and analysing changes in its composition. It covers 36 OECD countries for the period 1980-2015/16 and estimates for 2016-2018.

Latest analysis

January 2019: Social Expenditure Update - 8-page report  (.pdf) (see also in French and Spanish)
Public social spending is high in many OECD countries - Insights from the OECD Social Expenditure database (SOCX)

See also background information:
- all figures from above SOCX data update 2019 ( in one .xls file)
- net social expenditure indicators:  net social spending data (Table.xls) and detailed information on the impact of the tax system on social expenditure by country (.xls)

For data on social benefit Recipients, see the Social Benefit Recipients Database (SOCR)

See also Left on your own? Social protection when labour markets are in flux

May 2018 Policy Brief on the Future of Social Protection: What works for non-standard workers?

See data for all countries/years from aggregated SOCX data (link below).

SOCX Database

SOCX 1980-2015-2018 contains 3 datasets 

Aggregated data (public and private social spending data in various units)

Detailed data by social programme
Reference series  (GDP, NNI, governement spending, PPPs, population, etc.)
  (more reference series i.e. population, employment, unemployment, etc. can be found via OECD Social Indicators)


OECD.Stat Instructions

Default views in OECD.Stat are as follows:

- years 1980, 1985, 1990, 1995, 2000, 2010 and 2015/16
(data for intervening years are also available by changing the time period selection)

- all countries are selected for aggregated and reference series datasets

Default selections can be modified by double-clicking on appropriate variable and selecting appropriate item(s).


- all variables can be moved by drag & drop in headers/columns/lines as in a pivot-table

- meta-data information are available by clicking on "i" next to specific variable/item

- any table can be exported into Excel / text file by clicking on appropriate top-right icon

- datasets in French available by clicking on "version française" at top-right of screen  

Envelope iconClick here if you wish to be informed when the SOCX database is updated.
For comments and questions please email

SOCX Manual/Methodology

OECD SOCX Manual 2019 Edition: A guide to the OECD Social Expenditure Database ( English & Spanish Editions)


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